Parallel and passive distribution to arrayed microwells using self-regulating pinched flow

Kentaro Kawai*, Masaki Kanai, Tatsuya Munaka, Hirohisa Abe, Akira Murakami, Shuichi Shoji

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


A parallel and passive (without any actuators or electrodes) cell distribution method for a cellular diagnostic microwell array was developed. This method can be used to simultaneously distribute cells evenly to arrayed microwells only by introducing cell suspensions into the inlet. To regulate the dispersion of the number of distributed cells into each microwell, we conceived a novel concept, the self-regulating pinched flow. The self-regulating pinched flow is realized in a functional microchannel, which consists of center micropillar colonnades and side channels. Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations were carried out to optimize the design of the pinching area. We developed a prototype device that can be used to successfully distribute the beads uniformly in eight parallel microwells. The coefficient of variation (CV) of the distributed beads in the microwells was 29.3%.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)281-288
Number of pages8
JournalSensors and Materials
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2008 Dec 1


  • Cellular diagnostics
  • High throughput screening
  • Microwell array
  • Parallel distribution
  • Passive distribution
  • Self-regulating pinched flow

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Instrumentation
  • Materials Science(all)


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