ChBE Seminar Series: Javier Atencia

Tuesday, April 17, 2012
11:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
Room 2110 Chemical and Nuclear Engineering Bldg.
Professor Srinivasa Raghavan

Microfluidic Technology for Cell-Based Assays: Leveraging Transport Phenomena at the Microscale

Javier Atencia
Biochemical Science Division
National Institute of Standards and Technology

The effects of gravity and inertia dominate our experiences of the physical world. But as systems are reduced in size, phenomena such as diffusion, surface tension and viscosity become increasingly important. Microfluidics, a set of technologies that leverage microscale engineering and scale-dependence of fluid behavior at the microscale, has revolutionized our ability to precisely control fluid/fluid interfaces for use in fields ranging from materials processing and analytical chemistry to biology and medicine

In this talk I will discuss the state-of-the-art of current in vitro cell-based assays using micro well plates, and the role that microfluidic technology can perform in dynamic cell assays. Specifically, I will present a microfluidic diffusive gradient generator that takes advantage of the properties of low-Reynolds-number laminar flow to control the microenvironment in a cell culture chamber, with unprecedented robustness and simplicity in the design and operation.

The ability to create arbitrary perturbations to the cells’ microenvironment and monitor cellular activity temporally will open the wide repertoire of mathematical tools and assays from process control theory to study cell dynamics, such as time-domain and frequency-domain based assays.

Audience: Graduate  Faculty  Post-Docs 

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