MEMS based force sensors for the study of indentation response of single living cells

Shengyuan Yang, M. Taher A. Saif

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper presents bio-microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) force sensors, consisting of a probe and flexible beams, to study mechanobiological response of single living cells subjected to mechanical injury. Mechanical injuries are simulated by the application of large indentation on the cells by the sensor probe. The green fluorescent protein (GFP) technique is used to visualize the evolution of the actin network in the cells. The lateral indentation force response measurement capability of the sensors is shown. The cell force response is strongly linear for the initial indentation stage and the cells become yielded due to further indentation, which were not observed before. Two new types of remodeling, large buckling of stress fibers and actin agglomeration, in the actin network in a cell due to mechanical stimuli are also reported.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)16-22
Number of pages7
JournalSensors and Actuators, A: Physical
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 30 2007


  • Actin fibers
  • Cell mechanics
  • Green fluorescent protein (GFP)
  • Indentation
  • Microelectromechanical systems (MEMS)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Instrumentation
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Metals and Alloys
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering

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