Micromachines2014, 5(2), 216-227; doi:10.3390/mi5020216 - published online 23 April 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Biomimetics often provides efficient ways to create a product incorporating novel properties. Here we present the replication of the Pieris rapae butterfly optical structure. This butterfly has white wings with black spots. The white coloration is produced by light scattering on pterin beads ranging from 100 to 500 nm whereas black spots correspond to areas without pterin beads, thus revealing a highly pigmented layer underneath. In order to mimic the butterfly wing structure, we deposited SU-8 beads produced by electrospraying on a black absorbing layer made of black SU-8. We thereby replicated the optical effect observed on Pieris rapae. Additional experiments showed that the white coloration replication is a structural color. Finally, we further demonstrate that these optical engineered surfaces can be used for sucrose sensing in the range of 1 g/L to 250 g/L.
Micromachines2014, 5(2), 204-215; doi:10.3390/mi5020204 - published online 22 April 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Circulating tumor cells (CTCs) from blood of cancer patients are valuable prognostic markers and enable monitoring responses to therapy. The extremely low number of CTCs makes their isolation and characterization a major technological challenge. For label-free cell identification a novel combination of Raman spectroscopy with a microhole array platform is described that is expected to support high-throughput and multiplex analyses. Raman spectra were registered from regularly arranged cells on the chip with low background noise from the silicon nitride chip membrane. A classification model was trained to distinguish leukocytes from myeloblasts (OCI-AML3) and breast cancer cells (MCF-7 and BT-20). The model was validated by Raman spectra of a mixed cell population. The high spectral quality, low destructivity and high classification accuracy suggests that this approach is promising for Raman activated cell sorting.
Micromachines2014, 5(2), 171-203; doi:10.3390/mi5020171 - published online 8 April 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: This review focuses on recent advances in micro- and nano-fabrication techniques and their applications to electrochemical power devices, specifically microfabricated Lithium-ion batteries, enzymatic and microbial fuel cells (biofuel cells), and dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSCs). Although the maturity of these three technologies ranges from market ready (batteries) to fundamental research (biofuel cells) to applied research (DSSCs), advances in MEMS (Micro-Electro-Mechanical Systems) and NEMS (Nano-Electro-Mechanical Systems) techniques, particularly modifications in surface area and surface chemistry, and novel genetic and molecular engineering techniques, significantly improve the electrochemical activity of these technologies across the board. For each of these three categories of power-MEMS devices the review covers: (1) The technical challenges facing the performance and fabrication of electrochemical power devices; (2) Current MEMS and NEMS techniques used to improve efficiency; and (3) Future outlook and suggested improvements of MEMS and NEMS for implementation in electrochemical power devices.
Micromachines2014, 5(2), 158-170; doi:10.3390/mi5020158 - published online 3 April 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Metaphase chromosome spreading is the most crucial step required for successful karyotyping and FISH analysis. These two techniques are routinely used in cytogenetics to assess the chromosome abnormalities. The spreading process has been studied for years but it is still considered an art more than a science. The chromosome spreading greatly depends on the environmental conditions such as humidity and temperature, which govern the evaporation of fixative, in which the cells are suspended. The spreading is normally performed manually in ambient conditions on glass slides, which are hydrophilic, and thus allow for better quality spreads. Further cytogenetic analysis depends on the quality of the spreads, which is dependent on the skills of the personnel and is thus limited to laboratory settings. Here, we present a semi-closed microfluidic chip for preparation of the metaphase spreads on a glass and a Topasr substrate rendered more hydrophilic by oxygen plasma treatment coupled with photografting. The device consists of a microfluidic chamber with perfusion holes that facilitate the evaporation of fixative and reliable formation of the spreads. The usability of the chromosome spreads formed on the glass and the Topasr slide is tested by performing FISH analysis.
Micromachines2014, 5(2), 154-157; doi:10.3390/mi5020154 - published online 3 April 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: The Special Issue of Micromachines entitled “Micro/Nanofluidic Devices for Single Cell Analysis” covers recent advancements regarding the analysis of single cells by different microfluidic approaches. To understand cell to cell behavior with their organelles and their intracellular biochemical effect, single cell analysis (SCA) can provide much more detailed information from small groups of cells or even single cells, compared to conventional approaches, which only provide ensemble-average information of millions of cells together. Earlier reviews provided single cell analysis using different approaches [1–3]. The author demonstrates invasive and noninvasive with time and non-time resolved SCA ; whereas some other literature provided destructive (with dyes, DNA, RNA, proteins and amino acids) and nondestructive (electroporation, impedance measurement and fluorescence based methods) cellular content analysis using microfluidic devices . Further literature also suggest that single cell analysis is possible with capillary electrophoresis (CE) combined with a detection method such as electrochemical detection (ED), laser induced fluorescence (LIF) detection and mass spectrometry (MS) [4,5].
Micromachines2014, 5(2), 139-153; doi:10.3390/mi5020139 - published online 3 April 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: A novel hot embossing/low temperature ethanol solvent bonding method for the fabrication of polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA) field flow fractionation devices has been developed. The separation channel on a PMMA substrate was generated by a hot embossing process without vacuum. Special temperature-pressure profiles were used to analyze the influence of the hot embossing parameters. After the hot embossing process, ethanol solvent bonding was used to seal the separation channel on the PMMA substrate. The experimental results show that the bonding strength with ethanol solvent bonding at 35 °C (aspect ratio (depth/width): 0.043) is 3.05 MPa, and the deformation percentage is very low (0.54%). A burst pressure test indicated that the as-prepared PMMA gravitational field flow fractionation device has a very high burst pressure. Furthermore, the higher resolution of the as-prepared PMMA gravitational field flow fractionation device in the separation of wheat and starch particles shows that the hot embossing/low temperature ethanol solvent bonding technique will have potential commercial value.