Applied Microfluidics

In the Bailey Lab, we are developing low cost, robust, and simple-to-use microfluidic tools for miniaturized chemical and biochemical analysis. For instance, we are engineering a microfluidic platform for epigenetic profiling. Post-translational modifications to epigenetic DNA-histone protein associations regulate the accessibility of histone-bound DNA to transcription factors. This process influences gene expression, leading to heritable genetic differences in individuals with otherwise identical DNA, and has even been implicated in cancer progression. Our platform compartmentalizes each step of the analysis into ~200 pL volume droplets surrounded by an immiscible oil phase. Using each droplet as its own unique reaction vessel, droplet microfluidics can enable high throughput (500 droplets/second) processing of small samples down to the single cell level. For automation of epigenetic profiling, we have developed droplet microfluidic systems for encapsulating cells, injecting reagents, incubating reactions, and more. Additional work continues to interface microfluidic devices with other analytical approaches such as membrane protein analysis, surface functionalization and characterization, and immunoassays.

 

  F  unctionalized Magnetic Bead Encapsulation

Functionalized Magnetic Bead Encapsulation

 Picoinjection into Droplets

Picoinjection into Droplets