Scientists from Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) have developed a new microfluidic device that can rapidly and accurately isolate neutrophils, an innovation that can help in understanding immune system response to injury.
The scientists built on their experience in developing silicon-chip-based devices that isolate CD4 T cells and tumour cells, to develop the new device.
Standard isolation procedures take more than two hours and require large blood samples, but the new device can isolate neutrophils in less than five minutes from a microlitre-sized blood sample.
Lead author of the study, Kenneth Kotz said the tool will allow a new range of studies and diagnostics based on cell-specific genomic and proteomic signatures
“This technology, which is much faster and gentler than current approaches to isolating cells, can be scaled and modified to capture just about any cell type, and we’re working to apply it to other cell-based assays,” Kotz said.