Moving cells with sound
The core technology of AcouSort is acoustofluidics. Here, we combine acoustics and microfluidics to separate and trap cells and particles in acoustic fields. These techniques can perform almost any operation that is normally achieved through centrifugation in the biology or clinical lab – faster, automated and with more gentle sample handling.
To separate cells, the sample is flushed through a microchannel, typically half a millimeter wide. An ultrasonic standing wave is generated across the channel, creating a pressure field. The acoustic forces will move cells and particles denser and less compressible than the surrounding medium to the pressure node in the center of the channel.
This allows for a range of different operations – cells can be washed, concentrated or moved from one medium to another. Different types of cells can be separated from each other based on differences in size, density or compressibility. All of this can be performed using our technology, either in the AcouWash standalone platform or in customized OEM solutions.
In acoustic trapping, cells and particles are not only moved by the ultrasound – they are captured and held against the fluid flow. This allows for cells to be enriched and removed from their medium. With the use of larger seed particles, the technology also enables isolation of submicron particles such as extracellular vesicles or bacteria. The technology is available in the form of an AcouTrap benchtop system, or as a customized OEM solution.
Do not hesitate to contact us to discuss if our products, technologies or OEM solutions can be used for your applications.
AcouSort’s technology is based on over 15 years of research on acoustofluidics from Thomas Laurell’s group at the Department of Biomedical Engineering (BME) at Lund University, Sweden. An extensive list of papers published by the group can be found here. Below are some examples, highlighting some of the various possibilities and applications of the technology:
- Label-free separation of leukocyte subpopulations using high throughput multiplex acoustophoresis. Urbansky et al., Lab Chip, 2019, Accepted Manuscript
- Acoustofluidic Hematocrit Determination. Petersson et al., Analytica Chimica Acta 2018, volume 1000, 199-204
- Clinical-Scale Cell-Surface-Marker Independent Acoustic Microfluidic Enrichment of Tumor Cells from Blood. Magnusson et al., Anal. Chem. 2017, 89, 22, 11954-11961
- Rapid and Effective Enrichment of Mononuclear Cells from Blood Using Acoustophoresis. Urbansky et al., Scientific Reports 2017, volume 7, 17161
- Affinity-Bead-Mediated Enrichment of CD8+ Lymphocytes from Peripheral Blood Progenitor Cell Products Using Acoustophoresis. Urbansky et al., Micromachines 2016, 7(6), 101
- Integrated Acoustic Separation, Enrichment, and Microchip Polymerase Chain Reaction Detection of Bacteria from Blood for Rapid Sepsis Diagnostics. Ohlsson et al., Anal. Chem. 2016, 88 (19), 9403–9411
- Acoustic Trapping as a Generic Non-contact Incubation Site for Multiplex Bead-based Assays. Tenje et al., Analytica Chimica Acta 2015, volume 853, 682-688