A monolithic glass chip for active single-cell sorting based on mechanical phenotyping

Christoph Faigle, Franziska Lautenschlager, Graeme Whyte, Philip Homewood, Estela Martin-Badosa, Jochen Guck

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Citations (Scopus)
434 Downloads (Pure)


The mechanical properties of biological cells have long been considered as inherent markers of biological function and disease. However, the screening and active sorting of heterogeneous populations based on serial single-cell mechanical measurements has not been demonstrated. Here we present a novel monolithic glass chip for combined fluorescence detection and mechanical phenotyping using an optical stretcher. A new design and manufacturing process, involving the bonding of two asymmetrically etched glass plates, combines exact optical fiber alignment, low laser damage threshold and high imaging quality with the possibility of several microfluidic inlet and outlet channels. We show the utility of such a custombuilt optical stretcher glass chip by measuring and sorting single cells in a heterogeneous population based on their different mechanical properties and verify sorting accuracy by simultaneous fluorescence detection. This offers new possibilities of exact characterization and sorting of small populations based on rheological properties for biological and biomedical applications.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1267-1275
JournalLab on a Chip
Publication statusPublished - 7 Mar 2015


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