Special Issue "Microfluidic Platforms for Cell Culture and Investigations"

A special issue of Micromachines (ISSN 2072-666X).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 1 December 2019.

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Nobuyuki Futai
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Mechanical Engineering, Shibaura Institute of Technology, 3-7-5 Toyosu, Koto-ku, Tokyo 135-8548, Japan
Interests: mobile cell culture systems; on-chip reconstruction of vascular remodeling; cell-free DNA isolation
Dr. Atsushi Takano
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Digital Manufacturing and Design, Singapore University of Technology and Design, 8 Somapah Road, Singapore 487372, Singapore
Interests: mobile cell culture systems; cryopreservation of cells; digital manufacturing of cell-based devices

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

A cell culture is the result of a collection of techniques for isolating cells from animals or plants and maintaining them in apparatus, instead of using them at their origin. The aim of the cell culture is to control the fluidic, physicochemical, nutritional, scaffold, and other biological requirements for their survival, proliferation, and desired differentiation. Recent advances in microtechnology and tissue engineering have extended the cell culture to a wider range of cell numbers and densities, from single cells to 3D co-cultures, and for a wider range of cell culture cycles, from quick disposable cultures to very-long-term cell cultures. Microfluidic technology has also enabled the integration of various cell culture techniques into a chip, i.e., towards the realization of miniaturized cell-processing systems.

This Special Issue aims to turn the spotlight on microsystems for advanced cell culture. Numerous microfluidic systems for various cell-based assays are already the subject of intensive research, including on-chip cellomics and organ-on-chip, as already covered in other Special Issues in Micromachines. This Special Issue rather focuses on the concepts, devices, and methods for enhanced cell culture, including but not limited to fluidic/temperature/gas level control methods, cell handling such as sorting and preservation, and monitoring of cell culture media, all of which constitute the fundamentals of on-chip cellular assays and processing. In addition, this Special Issue will cover simple and effective microfluidic methods that address physicochemical instability and/or high adoption, and the learning costs that inherently come from microtechnology-origin cell culture systems. Downsizing and improving the traditional cell culture techniques will also open new possibilities in portable and affordable cell processing and cell-based sensing systems that will greatly contribute to precision medicine and accurate environmental monitoring.

Prof. Dr. Nobuyuki Futai
Dr. Atsushi Takano
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Micromachines is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Long-Term Culture
  • Hypoxic/Hyperoxic Culture
  • Culture in Gradients
  • Coculture/3D Culture
  • Single-Cell Culture
  • On-Chip Cell Sorting/Harvesting/Passaging
  • On-Chip Culture for Environment Monitoring
  • Cryopreservation

Published Papers (2 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle
Unveiling the Potential of Droplet Generation, Sorting, Expansion, and Restoration in Microfluidic Biochips
Micromachines 2019, 10(11), 756; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi10110756 - 06 Nov 2019
Abstract
Microfluidic biochip techniques are prominently replacing conventional biochemical analyzers by the integration of all functions necessary for biochemical analysis using microfluidics. The microfluidics of droplets offer exquisite control over the size of microliter samples to satisfy the requirements of embryo culture, which might [...] Read more.
Microfluidic biochip techniques are prominently replacing conventional biochemical analyzers by the integration of all functions necessary for biochemical analysis using microfluidics. The microfluidics of droplets offer exquisite control over the size of microliter samples to satisfy the requirements of embryo culture, which might involve a size ranging from picoliter to nanoliter. Polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) is the mainstream material for the fabrication of microfluidic devices due to its excellent biocompatibility and simplicity of fabrication. Herein, we developed a microfluidic biomedical chip on a PDMS substrate that integrated four key functions—generation of a droplet of an emulsion, sorting, expansion and restoration, which were employed in a mouse embryo system to assess reproductive medicine. The main channel of the designed chip had width of 1200 μm and height of 500 μm. The designed microfluidic chips possessed six sections—cleaved into three inlets and three outlets—to study the key functions with five-day embryo culture. The control part of the experiment was conducted with polystyrene (PS) beads (100 μm), the same size as the murine embryos, for the purpose of testing. The outcomes of our work illustrate that the rate of success of the static droplet culture group (87.5%) is only slightly less than that of a conventional group (95%). It clearly demonstrates that a droplet-based microfluidic system can produce a droplet in a volume range from picoliter to nanoliter. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Microfluidic Platforms for Cell Culture and Investigations)
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Open AccessArticle
High-Throughput Platform for Efficient Chemical Transfection, Virus Packaging, and Transduction
Micromachines 2019, 10(6), 387; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi10060387 - 10 Jun 2019
Abstract
Intracellular gene delivery is normally required to study gene functions. A versatile platform able to perform both chemical transfection and viral transduction to achieve efficient gene modification in most cell types is needed. Here we demonstrated that high throughput chemical transfection, virus packaging, [...] Read more.
Intracellular gene delivery is normally required to study gene functions. A versatile platform able to perform both chemical transfection and viral transduction to achieve efficient gene modification in most cell types is needed. Here we demonstrated that high throughput chemical transfection, virus packaging, and transduction can be conducted efficiently on our previously developed superhydrophobic microwell array chip (SMAR-chip). A total of 169 chemical transfections were successfully performed on the chip in physically separated microwells through a few simple steps, contributing to the convenience of DNA delivery and media change on the SMAR-chip. Efficiencies comparable to the traditional transfection in multi-well plates (~65%) were achieved while the manual operations were largely reduced. Two transfection procedures, the dry method amenable for the long term storage of the transfection material and the wet method for higher efficiencies were developed. Multiple transfections in a scheduled manner were performed to further increase the transfection efficiencies or deliver multiple genes at different time points. In addition, high throughput virus packaging integrated with target cell transduction were also proved which resulted in a transgene expression efficiency of >70% in NIH 3T3 cells. In summary, the SMAR-chip based high throughput gene delivery is efficient and versatile, which can be used for large scale genetic modifications in a variety of cell types. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Microfluidic Platforms for Cell Culture and Investigations)
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