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Cell Mol Biol (Noisy-le-grand). 2004 May;50(3):267-74.

Microrobots for in vitro fertilization applications.

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1
Micromanipulation and Micro-actuation Research Group, Laboratoire d'Automatique de Besançon, LAB UMR CNRS 6596, ENSMM-UFC, 24, rue Alain Savary, 25000 Besançon, France.

Abstract

The Micromanipulation and Micro-actuation Research Group at the LAB has activities related to biological and surgical applications. Concerning cells micromanipulation, our laboratory works in collaboration with the research team "Genetic and Reproduction" of the Besançon's hospital (France). The global final objective is the development of an automatic intra cytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) device in order to improve performances and ergonomics of current devices. In the future this new device will contain various modules: module for removal of cumulus cells, modules for characterization of oocytes, microinjection module, cells transport system. The first subsystem developed is a new single cell transport system. It consists in a so-called micropusher which pushes single cells without having contact with the external environment. This micropusher is a ferromagnetic particle (from 400 x 400 x 20 microm3 to 100 x 100 x 5 microm3) which follows the movement of a permanent magnet located under the biological medium. A 2D micro-positioning table moves this magnet under the glass slide. The pusher and cells positions are measured through an optical microscope with a CCD camera located above the biological medium. The second subsystem is developed to measure oocytes mechanical stiffness in order to sort them. We have then developed a micro/nano-force sensor based on the diamagnetic levitation principle: a glass tip end-effector (with 20 microm in diameter) is fixed on the equipment which is in levitation (0.5 mm in diameter, 100 mm in length). When a force is applied to the levitated glass tip, it moves to a new equilibrium position. Thanks to themeasurement of this displacement, the applied force can be measured. Since there is no contact and friction between the levitated tip and the fixed part, the resolution of this sensor is very high (10 nN).

PMID:
15209347
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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