Inertial focusing of cancer cell lines in curvilinear microchannels

Arzu Ozbey, Mehrdad Karimzadehkhouei, Nur M. Kocaturk, Secil Erbil Bilir, Ozlem Kutlu, Devrim Gozuacik, Ali Kosar (Lead / Corresponding author)

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Citations (Scopus)
97 Downloads (Pure)


Circulating tumor cells (CTCs) are rare cancer cells, which originate from the primary tumors and migrate to the bloodstream. Separation of CTCs from blood is critical because metastatic CTCs might hold different genomic and phenotypic properties compared to primary tumor cells. In this regard, accurate prognosis and effective treatment methods are necessary. For this purpose, focusing biological particles and cells using microfluidic systems have been implemented as an efficient CTCs enumeration and enrichment method. Passive, continuous, label-free and parallelizable size-dependent focusing based on hydrodynamic forces is preferred in this study to sort cancer cells while avoiding cell death and achieving high throughput. The focusing behavior of MDA-MB-231 (11–22 μm), Jurkat (8–17 μm), K562 (8–22 μm), and HeLa (16–29 μm) was examined with respect to different Reynolds numbers and Dean numbers. The effect of curvature on cell focusing was carefully assessed. The focusing positions of the cells clearly indicated that isolations of MDA cells from MDA-Jurkat cell mixtures as well as of HeLa cells from HeLa-Jurkat cell mixtures were possible by using the curvilinear channels with a curvature angle of 280° at the Reynolds number of 121.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)53-63
Number of pages11
JournalMicro and Nano Engineering
Early online date31 Jan 2019
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2019

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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