We work on the development of microfluidic systems for applied and fundamental research in genomics and cell biology. This interdisciplinary work uses a diverse set of methods ranging from single molecule detection to live-cell microscopy. Our research is focused around the themes of single cell analysis and genomic diagnostics with applications in the fields of stem cell science, cancer biology, microbiology, small RNA, and immunology. Areas of technology development include:
Live Cell Microscopy: We are interested in coupling the microfluidic systems with time-lapse live cell microscopy to examine cellular responses to well-defined and changing chemical environments in a high-throughput format. In particular we are developing systems and companion image processing tools for examining lineage effects in signaling and cell fate decisions. These platforms are being used for experiments with yeast, hematopoietic stem cells, and embryonic stem cells.
Single Cell Genomics: We are developing technologies for scalable measurements of mRNA and miRNA expression from single cells using PCR readouts. We are further advancing devices with on-chip single cell processing capabilities needed for preparation of whole transcriptome or genome sequencing libraries.
Measurement and Diagnostics: We are developing devices to extend the precision and sensitivity of genomic and proteomic measurements. This includes technology ultra-high density digital PCR, on-chip protein separations, and sequence enrichment for next generation sequencing.
Microfabrication: Although our emphasis is on applications, we continue to develop and refine our capabilities in large-scale microfluidic integration. This includes improvements in feature density, methods for interfacing and bonding devices, and the fabrication of topologically complex microfluidics.