Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New technique for sorting live cells may expedite biomedical research

Date:
October 17, 2012
Source:
North Carolina State University
Summary:
Researchers have developed a new technique that uses sound waves to rapidly separate selected collections of cells for use in biomedical research.

The researchers used ultrasound to release targeted micropallets, as seen here.
Credit: Image courtesy of North Carolina State University

Researchers from North Carolina State University and University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill have developed a new technique that uses sound waves to rapidly separate selected collections of cells for use in biomedical research.

"We think this is important because it will make it faster and easier for researchers to sort out the live cells they need for research ranging from disease study to drug development," says Dr. Xiaoning Jiang, an associate professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering and adjunct professor of biomedical engineering at NC State and co-author of a paper on the work.

Biomedical research often focuses on how specific cell types respond to various chemicals or environmental factors. These cells are often grown in a liquid medium and on top of a collection of "micropallets," which are essentially small plastic platforms that sit on the substrate at the bottom of the container. Researchers then select the cells they want and detach the relevant micropallets, which can be removed for additional experimentation or analysis.

Current techniques for removing these micropallets rely on lasers or physical manipulation to separate the pallets from the substrate. But each approach has its drawbacks. Physical manipulation is a slow process, while the energy produced by lasers to release larger micropallets (e.g., a micropallet 500 micrometers in diameter) can inadvertently kill a significant number of the cells. Neither technique is efficient at detaching a significant number of large micropallets quickly.

The new technique from NC State uses ultrasound technology to release the micropallets. Specifically, it uses focused, relatively high-frequency sound waves that are translated into a wave of pressure within the substrate itself. When that wave of force hits a targeted micropallet, the pallet is lifted off the substrate and can be removed, together with its attached cells, for further study.

Using this technique, micropallets can be selectively released in less than a millisecond. This is not as fast as laser-based techniques, but is much faster than physical manipulation. However, the ultrasound technique has a viability rate of better than 90 percent, meaning that more than 90 percent of live cells survive the process. This is significantly better than existing techniques for the release of large-sized pallets, which can have viability rates of less than 50 percent.

Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pVIeabhU1OY


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by North Carolina State University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Sijia Guo, Yuli Wang, Nancy Allbritton and Xiaoning Jiang. Ultrasound-induced release of micropallets with cells. Applied Physics Letters, Volume 101 / Issue 16 (2012) DOI: 10.1063/1.4757648

Cite This Page:

North Carolina State University. "New technique for sorting live cells may expedite biomedical research." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 17 October 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/10/121017124101.htm>.
North Carolina State University. (2012, October 17). New technique for sorting live cells may expedite biomedical research. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/10/121017124101.htm
North Carolina State University. "New technique for sorting live cells may expedite biomedical research." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/10/121017124101.htm (accessed October 20, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Monday, October 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Raw: Rare Lion Cubs Make Debut at Belgrade Zoo

Raw: Rare Lion Cubs Make Debut at Belgrade Zoo

AP (Oct. 17, 2014) Two white lion cubs were born in Belgrade zoo three weeks ago. White lions are a rare mutation of a species found in South Africa and some cultures consider them divine. (Oct. 17) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Best Foods To Boost Your Mood

The Best Foods To Boost Your Mood

Buzz60 (Oct. 17, 2014) Feeling down? Reach for the refrigerator, not the medicine cabinet! TC Newman (@PurpleTCNewman) shares some of the best foods to boost your mood. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Sweet Times for Hard Cider Makers

Sweet Times for Hard Cider Makers

AP (Oct. 16, 2014) With hard cider making a hardcore comeback across the country, craft makers are trying to keep up with demand and apple growers are tapping a juicy new revenue stream. (Oct. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Meet Garfi the Angry Cat

Meet Garfi the Angry Cat

Buzz60 (Oct. 16, 2014) Garfi is one frowny, feisty feline - downright angry! Ko Im (@koimtv) introduces us to the latest animal celebrity taking over the Internet. You can follow more of Garfi's adventures on Twitter (@MeetGarfi) and Facebook (Garfi). Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins