Brown University School of Engineering

Fluids Seminar: Differential Inertial Microfluidics: Label-free Cell Manipulation and Functionalizatin for Biomedical Engineering

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Tuesday, February 11, 2014 3:00pm - 4:00pm

Center for Fluid Mechanics, Division of Applied Mathematics Fluids and Thermal Systems, School of Engineering Biomedical Engineering, School of Engineering Joint Seminar Series TUESDAY – February 11, 2014 3:00pm Barus & Holley, Room 190 SJ Claire Hur, Ph.D. Rowland Institute at Harvard University Cambridge, MA Differential Inertial Microfluidics: Label-free Cell Manipulation and Functionalization for Biomedical Research Alteration in single-cell physical properties (e.g., size, deformability, and shape) has been identified to be a useful indicator of changes in cellular phenotype of importance for biological research since mechanical properties of single cells are found to be strongly associated not only with their lineage but also with the progression of various diseases. A intrinsic physical biomarker would likely have lower operating costs than current molecular-based biomarkers that require pre-processing steps, dyes, and/or costly antibodies. Furthermore, disease states of interest can be expanded to those without predetermined immunological markers as long as a correlation between cellular biophysical phenotype and clinical outcome is confirmed. Therefore, novel techniques, allowing high-throughput single-cell deformability measurement and target cell enrichment based on deformability, would expand the research use and clinical adoption of this biomarker. Differential inertial microfluidic devices are great candidates for such tasks since they can (i) continuously but differentially position bio-particles to geometrically-determined equilibrium positions in flow, and/or (ii) isolate and maintain identical populations of cells in the designated regions in the channel without need for additional external forces. Research findings showed that dynamic equilibrium positions are strongly influenced by flowing particles’ physical properties, the flow speed as well as the channel geometry. Using differences in dynamic equilibrium positions, we adapted the system to conduct passive, label-free and continuous cell enrichment based on their physical properties. In addition, vortex-generating inertial microfluidics’ ability to contain cells in pre-determined locations and to release on-demand allowed todevelop a simple molecular probe delivery system with improved single-cell transfection capability. My lab focuses on developing techniques that have potential for high-throughput target cell detection, cost-effective cell separation, and sequential gene delivery, useful for cancer research, immunology, gene therapy and regenerative medicine.