Integration of a pump and an electrical sensor into a membrane-based PDMS microbioreactor for cell culture and drug testing

Serge Ostrovidov, Yasuyuki Sakai, Teruo Fujii

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    15 Citations (Scopus)


    To the extent possible, artificial organs should have characteristics that match those of the in vivo system. To this end, microfabrication techniques allow us to create microenvironments that can help maintain cell organization and functionality in in vitro cultures. We present three new microbioreactors, each of which allows cells to be cultured in a perfused microenvironment similar to that found in vivo. Our microbioreactors use new technology that permits integration onto the chip (35 mm×20 mm) of an electrical sensor, in addition to one or more pumping systems and associated perfusion circuitry. The monitoring of Caco-2 cell cultures using electrical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) has allowed us to measure the effects of cell growth, cellular barrier formation and the presence of chemical compounds and/or toxins. Specifically, we have investigated the ability of the electrical sensor to maintain appropriate sensitivity and precision. Our results show that the sensor was very sensitive not only to the presence or the absence of the cells, but also to changes in cell state. Our perfused microbioreactors are highly efficient miniaturized tools that are easy to operate. We anticipate that they will offer promising new opportunities in many types of cell culture research, including drug screening and tissue engineering.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)847-864
    Number of pages18
    JournalBiomedical microdevices
    Issue number5
    Publication statusPublished - 2011 Oct


    • Caco-2
    • Drug testing
    • Impedance
    • Microfluidic device
    • PDMS

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Biomedical Engineering
    • Molecular Biology


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