Microfluidic cell biology
Cells are constantly exposed to biochemical stimulation from the early embryonic stage to adult life. The spatiotemporal regulation of these signals is essential as it determines cell fate, phenotype, metabolic activity as well as pathological behaviors. The fast response and high stability of Fluigent instruments make them the best solution available on the market to reproduce these complex variations in vitro.
In vivo, most cells are constantly exposed, actively or passively, to mechanical forces. Reproducing these physiological constraints in vitro is essential to induce the right phenotype to cells, finalize their maturation and maintain homeostasis. The wide range of pressure covered by Fluigent products permits one to accurately study biomechanics from molecular level to organ scale.
How to reproduce active biomimetic stimulation in vitro?
Organ-on-a-chip (OOC) technology has paved the way for investigating the impact of mechanical strain in cell biology research by reproducing key aspects of an in vivo cellular microenvironment. Combining microfluidics and microfabrication enables one to reproduce mechanical forces experienced by living tissues at the cell scale.
Micropipette aspiration of cells and tissues
Micropipette aspiration is a powerful non-invasive technique to evaluate how biomechanical properties of single cells or tissue govern cell shape, cell response to mechanic stimuli, transition from nontumorigenic to tumorigenic state or morphogenesis
Passive mechanical stimulation induced by laminar and pulsatile shear stress
Indirect mechanical forces and shear stress are integral parts of the cellular microenvironment. Reproducing these mechanical forces and shear stress is critical to capture the physiology of living tissues. Three types of flows are typically generated for producing shear stress : laminar, pulsatile, or interstitial flow.
Prostate Organoid Culture in Microbeads
Microbead-based microfluidics is a powerful technique that generates highly monodispersed picoliter-sized beads into a continuous phase. This method has been successfully adapted to cell culture to encapsulate cells in micron size hydrogel beads. The main advantages are reduced costs related to miniaturization, high reproducibility, and high throughput screening capacities.
Why is a controlled shear-stress a key parameter of your microfluidic experiments?
Mechanical forces are potent regulators of cellular structures and functions in both health and disease. Of these forces, shear stress is particularly important as it stimulates the release of vasoactive substances and changes gene expression, cell metabolism, and cell morphology.