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Micromachines 2018, 9(9), 467; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi9090467

Microfluidic-Based Technique for Measuring RBC Aggregation and Blood Viscosity in a Continuous and Simultaneous Fashion

Department of Mechanical Engineering, Chosun University, 309 Pilmun-daero, Dong-gu, Gwangju 61452, Korea
Received: 24 August 2018 / Revised: 6 September 2018 / Accepted: 11 September 2018 / Published: 14 September 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Microfluidics for Cell-Based Assays)
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Abstract

Hemorheological properties such as viscosity, deformability, and aggregation have been employed to monitor or screen patients with cardiovascular diseases. To effectively evaluate blood circulating within an in vitro closed circuit, it is important to quantify its hemorheological properties consistently and accurately. A simple method for measuring red blood cell (RBC) aggregation and blood viscosity is proposed for analyzing blood flow in a microfluidic device, especially in a continuous and simultaneous fashion. To measure RBC aggregation, blood flows through three channels: the left wide channel, the narrow channel and the right wide channel sequentially. After quantifying the image intensity of RBCs aggregated in the left channel (<IRA>) and the RBCs disaggregated in the right channel (<IRD>), the RBC aggregation index (AIPM) is obtained by dividing <IRA> by <IRD>. Simultaneously, based on a modified parallel flow method, blood viscosity is obtained by detecting the interface between two fluids in the right wide channel. RBC aggregation and blood viscosity were first evaluated under constant and pulsatile blood flows. AIPM varies significantly with respect to blood flow rate (for both its amplitude and period) and the concentration of the dextran solution used. According to our quantitative comparison between the proposed aggregation index (AIPM) and the conventional aggregation index (AICM), it is found that AIPM provides consistent results. Finally, the suggested method is employed to obtain the RBC aggregation and blood viscosity of blood circulating within an in vitro fluidic circuit. The experimental results lead to the conclusion that the proposed method can be successfully used to measure RBC aggregation and blood viscosity, especially in a continuous and simultaneous fashion. View Full-Text
Keywords: red blood cell (RBC) aggregation; blood viscosity; continuous and simultaneous fashion; microfluidic device; RBC aggregation index; in vitro fluidic circuit red blood cell (RBC) aggregation; blood viscosity; continuous and simultaneous fashion; microfluidic device; RBC aggregation index; in vitro fluidic circuit
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Kang, Y.J. Microfluidic-Based Technique for Measuring RBC Aggregation and Blood Viscosity in a Continuous and Simultaneous Fashion. Micromachines 2018, 9, 467.

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