Microfluidic Templated Multicompartment Microgels for 3D Encapsulation and Pairing of Single Cells

Citation:

Zhang, L. ; Chen, K. ; Zhang, H. ; Pang, B. ; Choi, C. - H. ; Mao, A. S. ; Liao, H. ; Utech, S. ; Mooney, D. J. ; Wang, H. ; et al. Microfluidic Templated Multicompartment Microgels for 3D Encapsulation and Pairing of Single Cells. Small 2018, 14, 1-8. Copy at http://www.tinyurl.com/yagk6z94
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Abstract:

Controlled encapsulation and pairing of single cells within a confined 3D matrix can enable the replication of the highly ordered cellular structure of human tissues. Microgels with independently controlled compartments that can encapsulate cells within separately confined hydrogel matrices would provide precise control over the route of pairing single cells. Here, a one‐step microfluidic method is presented to generate monodisperse multicompartment microgels that can be used as a 3D matrix to pair single cells in a highly biocompatible manner. A method is presented to induce microgels formation on chip, followed by direct extraction of the microgels from oil phase, thereby avoiding prolonged exposure of the microgels to the oil. It is further demonstrated that by entrapping stem cells with niche cells within separate but adjacent compartments of the microgels, it can create complex stem cell niche microenvironments in a controlled manner, which can serve as a useful tool for the study of cell–cell interactions. This microfluidic technique represents a significant step toward high‐throughput single cells encapsulation and pairing for the study of intercellular communications at single cell level, which is of significant importance for cell biology, stem cell therapy, and tissue engineering.

Publisher's Version

Last updated on 09/07/2018