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Lab Chip. 2013 Feb 21;13(4):722-9. doi: 10.1039/c2lc40896a.

Microfluidic impedance cytometer for platelet analysis.

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  • 1Dept. of Measurement Technology and Industrial Electrical Engineering, Lund University, Sweden.


We present the design and performance characteristics of a platelet analysis platform based on a microfluidic impedance cytometer. Dielectrophoretic focusing is used to centre cells in a fluid stream, which then forms the core of a two-phase flow (dielectric focusing). This flow then passes between electrodes for analysis by differential impedance spectroscopy at multiple frequencies from 280 kHz to 4 MHz. This approach increases the signal-to-noise ratio relative to a single-phase, unfocused stream, while minimising the shear forces to which the cells are subjected. The percentage of activated platelets before and after passage through the chip was measured using flow cytometry, and no significant change was measured. Measuring the in-phase amplitude at a single frequency is sufficient to distinguish platelets from erythrocytes. Using multi-frequency impedance measurements and discriminant analysis, resting platelets can be discriminated from activated platelets. This multifrequency impedance cytometer therefore allows ready determination of the degree of platelet activation in blood samples.

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