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Micromachines (Basel). 2018 Jun 6;9(6). pii: E286. doi: 10.3390/mi9060286.

Nanoliter Centrifugal Liquid Dispenser Coupled with Superhydrophobic Microwell Array Chips for High-Throughput Cell Assays.

Author information

1
Department of Biomedical Engineering, School of Medicine, Collaborative Innovation Center for Diagnosis and Treatment of Infectious Diseases, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, China. yy-wang15@mails.tsinghua.edu.cn.
2
Department of Biomedical Engineering, School of Medicine, Collaborative Innovation Center for Diagnosis and Treatment of Infectious Diseases, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, China. wu-ys17@mails.tsinghua.edu.cn.
3
Department of Biomedical Engineering, School of Medicine, Collaborative Innovation Center for Diagnosis and Treatment of Infectious Diseases, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, China. yue-c14@mails.tsinghua.edu.cn.
4
Department of Biomedical Engineering, School of Medicine, Collaborative Innovation Center for Diagnosis and Treatment of Infectious Diseases, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, China. zhangjx13@mails.tsinghua.edu.cn.
5
School of Biological Science and Medical Engineering, Beihang University, Beijing 100191, China. xfchen@buaa.edu.cn.
6
Department of Biomedical Engineering, School of Medicine, Collaborative Innovation Center for Diagnosis and Treatment of Infectious Diseases, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, China. pliu@tsinghua.edu.cn.

Abstract

Microfluidic systems have been regarded as a potential platform for high-throughput screening technology in drug discovery due to their low sample consumption, high integration, and easy operation. The handling of small-volume liquid is an essential operation in microfluidic systems, especially in investigating large-scale combination conditions. Here, we develop a nanoliter centrifugal liquid dispenser (NanoCLD) coupled with superhydrophobic microwell array chips for high-throughput cell-based assays in the nanoliter scale. The NanoCLD consists of a plastic stock block with an array of drilled through holes, a reagent microwell array chip (reagent chip), and an alignment bottom assembled together in a fixture. A simple centrifugation at 800 rpm can dispense ~160 nL reagents into microwells in 5 min. The dispensed reagents are then delivered to cells by sandwiching the reagent chip upside down with another microwell array chip (cell chip) on which cells are cultured. A gradient of doxorubicin is then dispensed to the cell chip using the NanoCLD for validating the feasibility of performing drug tests on our microchip platform. This novel nanoliter-volume liquid dispensing method is simple, easy to operate, and especially suitable for repeatedly dispensing many different reagents simultaneously to microwells.

KEYWORDS:

drug screening; high-throughput screening; microfluidics; microwell array; nanoliter liquid dispensing; superhydrophobicity

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