A simple microfluidic platform for the partial treatment of insuspendable tissue samples with orientation control

Anthony Fan, Alireza Tofangchi, Matthew De Venecia, M Taher A Saif

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Microfluidic devices have extensively been applied to study biological samples, including single cells. Exploiting laminar flows on a small scale, microfluidics allow for the selective and partial exposure of samples to various chemical treatments. Traditionally, suspendable samples are first flowed into formed microchannels and are allowed to adhere to the channel floor randomly with no control over sample placement or orientation, before being subjected to partial treatment. This severely limits the choice of samples and the extent of sample preparations. Here, we overcame this limit by reversing the sequence. We prepared the samples first on glass substrates. A patterned silicone slab was then placed on the substrate to form channels at an appropriate orientation with respect to the sample. We used liquid silicone rubber (LSR) as the base material. Its compliance (low elastic modulus) and its adhesion to glass offer the necessary seal to form the microchannels naturally. The applicability of the device was demonstrated by testing single axons of embryonic Drosophila motor neurons in vivo. A segment of the axons was subjected to drugs that inhibit myosin activities or block voltage-gated sodium ion channels. In response, the axons reduced the clustering of neuro-transmitter vesicles at the presynaptic terminal of neuromuscular junctions, or increased the calcium intake and underwent membrane hyperpolarization, respectively. Such fundamental studies cannot be carried out using conventional microfluidics.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)735-742
Number of pages8
JournalLab on a chip
Volume18
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 7 2018

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Microfluidics
Axons
Lab-On-A-Chip Devices
Tissue
Microchannels
Silicones
Glass
Voltage-Gated Sodium Channels
Silicone Elastomers
Sodium Channels
Neuromuscular Junction
Elastic Modulus
Presynaptic Terminals
Motor Neurons
Substrates
Myosins
Laminar flow
Compliance
Drosophila
Neurons

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Biochemistry
  • Chemistry(all)
  • Biomedical Engineering

Cite this

A simple microfluidic platform for the partial treatment of insuspendable tissue samples with orientation control. / Fan, Anthony; Tofangchi, Alireza; De Venecia, Matthew; Saif, M Taher A.

In: Lab on a chip, Vol. 18, No. 5, 07.03.2018, p. 735-742.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Fan, Anthony ; Tofangchi, Alireza ; De Venecia, Matthew ; Saif, M Taher A. / A simple microfluidic platform for the partial treatment of insuspendable tissue samples with orientation control. In: Lab on a chip. 2018 ; Vol. 18, No. 5. pp. 735-742.
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