Interdisciplinary Initiatives Program Round 3 – 2006

Eugene Butcher, Pathology
Juan Santiago, Mechanical Engineering

The proposed research aims to develop novel microfluidic electrokinetic systems (MES) to study the directed migration of T cells in response to chemical gradients (i.e. chemotaxis) and electrical potential gradients (i.e. electrotaxis). At the core of the MES approach are isotachophoresis (ITP)-based sample stacking methods, which allows us to generate many gradients in parallel with high efficiency within single channels. These methods will provide improved temporal control of chemical gradients compared to pressure-driven flow based methods, and because of their miniaturization and ease of manipulation, they will enable ‘high throughput’ studies of lymphocyte migration under a wide range of well-controlled experimental conditions.