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Dec. 15, 2013

Micro/nano structured chip capable of non-invasive cellular control

RIKEN No.: 07733


Hiromi Miyoshi, Yutaka Yamagata, Taiji Adachi, Jungmyoung Ju (RIKEN)
Jong Soo Ko, Sang Min Lee, Dong Jin Cho (Pusan National University)


Cells have the property of moving when adhered to extracellular scaffold materials. Technology that controls cell motility is not only helpful in understanding mechanisms such as ontogeny and cancer metastasis, but it is also important in medical engineering applications, such as tissue formation / regeneration / maintenance and cancer diagnosis / treatment.


The authors developed technology that uses collections of micro grooves and that non-invasively controls cell behavior without negatively affecting cells. A micro / nanostructured interface that repels or traps cells is formed by adjusting the groove width.

This technology is based on the property of changing cell behavior according to the mutual physical effects between cells and cell scaffold material.

Figure showing the turning behavior of a cell

Fig.1 Turning behavior of a cell encountering an intersecting grooved surface

Figure showing the cell culture and sorting on the biomaterial

Fig.2 Cells can be cultured and sorted on specifically patterned surfaces of biomaterials


  • Non-invasive: Gentle to cells
  • Micro/nanostructured chip: Contributes to miniaturization of devices


  • Cell array: Drug discovery screening chips based on a cell sensor. Chips used for tissue reconstruction in culture systems.
  • Cell sorting: Cell sorting chips that sort target cells without labels. Highly convenient cytodiagnostic chips.


  • 1.Japanese patent application No.2010-018665
  • 2.H Miyoshi et al., Biomaterials 33, (2012) pp. 395-401.
  • 3.H Miyoshi et al., Biomaterials 31, (2010) pp. 8539-8545.