Micro / Nano Fluidics

Fluid patterning

Flow behavior in microfluidic channels is different from the bulk system due to the small size of the channel. One of the critical difference is that the fluid forms laminar in the microfluidic channel that flow without mixing with neighboring layers. Our interest is mainly based on the utilization of this unique property of laminar flows to various applications. For example, we synthesize multi-compartmental particles by applying the lithography process on the constructed multiple fluid layers in the microfluidic channel. By constructing fluid layers with various functional monomers, the synthesis of multi-functional particles can be achieved. In addition to the particle synthesis through fluid patterning, we are interested in microchannel design and fluid modeling for advanced fluid structuring.

Separation and Purification

Isolating specific cell types or analytes from heterogeneous mixtures is crucial for biological research, diagnosis, and therapy. For example, in 1mL of blood of cancer patients, 1-10 circulating tumor cells of which analysis can assist early patient prognoses are contained, but there are a billion red blood cells. Through a microfluidic device, cells can be separated without complex processes and equipment. Laminar flow behavior dominant in microfluidic channel leads cells to follow the streamline passing through their center of mass. Therefore, if the streamline of fluid is manipulated by channel geometry and flow properties, specific cells can be isolated by physical differences such as size, shape, elasticity. In our lab, we are interested in designing the geometry of the microchannel and modeling fluid to separate biomolecules for biomedical applications.

Bio-MEMS Technology

Bio-MEMS technology which is a technology that combines biology and Micro-electro-mechanics system. It is one of spotlighted technology because of considerable advantages which are improved work efficiency, decrease produced cost, and analysis possible with a small amount of sample. This technology is composed of two fields. One is using microfluidics, another is combination with biomedical and experiment device. Based on this, our lab creates various shapes of biocompatible microparticles by lithography that is a sort of microfluidic technology. These particles enable to be functionalized to selectively detect and be dissolved for target substance, so we expect that we can apply on diagnosis, therapeutics, and drug delivery. Furthermore, if this particle merges with the analysis system, it could realize the ‘Lap-on-a-chip’ system in the biomedical field.