Microfluidic slide with individual cell holders for use in microinjection procedures.
- Open system - compatible with other microinjection technologies and existing research instrumentation.
- Compatible with both adherent and non-adherent cells.
- Enables high-throughput and high-precision delivery of substances into cells, specifically the nucleus if needed.
- Potentially low-cost and disposable.
The efficient capture and retention of individual cells for precise delivery of therapeutic agents remains a great challenge in microinjection procedures, especially in those that involve suspended cells. Current microfluidic slides can sort cells in a closed system. Because they are enclosed systems, however, microinjection technologies cannot be used with the slides. A solution to these technical challenges with an open system design could potentially be of interest to companies that manufacture microfluidic devices or develop cell-based therapies.
Dr. Lam and his colleagues have invented a microfluidic system that is open and therefore compatible with external microinjection devices. This technology consists of a slide with a grid of C-shaped structures on its surface. Cells suspended in a fluid are flowed over the device in one direction. As the cells settle, they will be trapped and immobilized by the C-shaped cell holders during microinjection which will allow efficient injection of therapeutic agents into individual cells. After injection, the fluid flow is reversed to release the cells.
Prototype device developed.