Jump to main content
Jump to site search
PLANNED MAINTENANCE Close the message box

Scheduled maintenance upgrade on Thursday 4th of May 2017 from 8.00am to 9.00am (BST).

During this time our websites will be offline temporarily. If you have any questions please use the feedback button on this page. We apologise for any inconvenience this might cause and thank you for your patience.


Issue 1, 2008
Previous Article Next Article

Microfluidic flow-encoded switching for parallel control of dynamic cellular microenvironments

Author affiliations

Abstract

The temporal pattern of a biological stimulus is an important determinant of the resulting cellular response. We present a microfluidic parallel perfusion culture system for controlling the dynamics of soluble cell microenvironments while simultaneously performing live-cell imaging of cellular responses. A “Flow-encoded Switching” (FES) design strategy is developed to simultaneously deliver many different temporal profiles of stimuli, including pulse train widths, lengths, and frequencies, to downstream adherent cells using a single input control. The design strategy uses principles of laminar flow and diffusion-limited mixing to encode the state of the network (the instantaneous stimulus concentrations in each channel) into the ratio of two flow rates, which is controlled by a single differential pressure. To demonstrate the utility of this experimental system, we investigated the effect of dynamic stimuli on NFκB transcriptional activation and cell fate determination. Our results illustrate that transcriptional responses and cell fate decisions depend both quantitatively and qualitatively on the timing of the stimulus. In summary, by encoding dynamic stimuli in a single input pressure, microfluidic flow-encoded switching offers a scalable experimental method for systematically probing the functional significance of temporally patterned cellular environments.

Graphical abstract: Microfluidic flow-encoded switching for parallel control of dynamic cellular microenvironments

Back to tab navigation
Please wait while Download options loads

Supplementary files

Publication details

The article was received on 24 Jul 2007, accepted on 02 Nov 2007 and first published on 29 Nov 2007


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/B716962K
Citation: Lab Chip, 2008,8, 107-116
  •   Request permissions

    Microfluidic flow-encoded switching for parallel control of dynamic cellular microenvironments

    K. R. King, S. Wang, A. Jayaraman, M. L. Yarmush and M. Toner, Lab Chip, 2008, 8, 107
    DOI: 10.1039/B716962K

Search articles by author