Category Archives: Miccell-Applications


A Versatile Microfluidic System

Selected Applications

The MicCell System gained much attention from researchers world wide. Here we present a list of applications already done. Please contact us for further details.

  • Micro-reaction technology, e.g., hybridization or stoppedflow chamber, using fluorescence detection
  • Immobilization of biomolecules (e.g., protein or DNA) in the microchannels before assembly, e.g., by microarraying
  • Generation of concentration gradients perpendicular to the microchannel cross section by a “gradient mixer”
  • Semi-automatic drug screening using adherent cells or tissue slices
  • Viability tests and other cell-based physiological assays
  • Measurement of the interaction of cells with immobilized proteins, DNA, RNA, oligo- or polysaccharides, lipids, and other ligands
  • Cell handling and sorting using optical tweezers
  • Identification of cancer or stem cells using an “optical stretcher” (patent University of Leipzig)
  • Electroporation in the flow
  • Testing of the uniformity of microbeads and other particles, potentially with sorting
  • Manipulation of elongated macromolecules (e.g., DNA or motor proteins) in hydrodynamic flow fields for the bottom-up construction of nanostructures, force measurements, etc.
  • Micro-capillary electrophoresis under the microscope
  • Integration of, e.g., column or filtration material for micro-purifying with or without microscope control
  • Liquid processing independent of a microscope (e.g., assays using electrochemical detection)
    Chemical synthesis on the nanoscale
  • Observation of opaque objects in the MicCell using the pivotable sample carrier


Biofilms and (Anti-)Biofouling

Primary Cell Adhesion and Biofilm Formation on Anti-(bio)fouling Surfaces

In order to exploit the potential of biofilms or minimize the risk of their formation it is important to study and characterize them. To meet these aims the biomonitoring group of the Institute of Food Technology and Bioprocess Engineering at TU Dresden has established a modular flow cell system with a parallel plate flow chamber. It is based on GeSiM’s MicCell and offers possibilities to study biofilms on opaque surfaces in continuous flows under a fluorescence microscope.

The PDMS-CP (Heart of the MicCell) has been extended by a more complex sandwich structure (right side): Sample pieces with antifouling coating can be inserted to the fluidic layer.

The PDMS-CP (Heart of the MicCell) has been extended by a more complex sandwich structure (right side): Sample pieces with antifouling coating can be inserted to the fluidic layer.

The centrepiece of the flow chamber is a microfluidic chip, consisting of a glass slide, a fluidic layer and the substrate. The fluidic layer is made from a polymer 3D printed on the glass slide and both its thick­ness and shape can be modified.


Microscope Setup2Recently an innovative sample holder was designed. It is made of stainless steel with holes to ensure liquid flow across the sample surface. The advantage of this setup is that samples with various geometries can be examined with no need for drilling before analyses. Hence the flow cell can be easily and rapidly adapted to meet different requirements.

Furthermore, due to the laminar flow inside the microfluidic channel, conditions can be tightly controlled, and we can regulate variables such as oxygen and nutrient levels simply by varying the medium supply.

We use the flow chamber to study the adhesion behaviour of microorganisms and the first stages of biofilm formation on various materials. The acquired data are used to characterize the local and time-related biofilm formation and to derive parameters like growth rate, biofilm height and biomass volume.

Technische Universität DresdenBio_Ilb_Logo
Faculty of Mechanical Science and Engineering
Institute for Food Technology and Bioprocess Engineering
Chair of Bioprocess Engineering, Prof. Th. Bley
Biomonitoring Group, Assoc. Prof. E. Boschke, Dipl.-Ing. S. Mulansky