Micromachining of Single Cell Array for Oxygen Consumption Rate Analysis
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The Oxygen Consumption Rate of biological cells is an important parameter of cellular metabolism. In order to study the behaviour of cell populations, it becomes necessary to capture and store them in one location for analysis. Individual cell analysis within a cell group can provide useful information about the average response of the cell group, as well as identify outliers. Such analysis can be used to identify different groups of cells based on their oxygen levels. However, characterizing the individual cell response within a cell group is challenging since cell dimensions are on the order of a few micrometers. Conventional techniques, such as microtiter plates and flow cytometry, are unable to offer both the high temporal and the high spatial resolution that is required to characterize individual cells. Modern micromachining and microfabrication techniques, on the other hand, allow for the creation of devices that have dimensions that are on the order of a few micrometers. Through a series of thin film deposition, photolithography and thin film etching techniques, it is possible to create single cell trapping structures whose dimensions are only slightly larger than that of individual cells. The aim of this thesis is to create a process flow in order to fabricate such structures on a single crystalline silicon substrate using available micromachining techniques.
Kumar, Akhil Ravi (2016). Micromachining of Single Cell Array for Oxygen Consumption Rate Analysis. Master's thesis, Texas A&M University. Available electronically from