Metal electrodes with micron scale width enable the heating of less than a dozen cells in a confluent layer at predictable temperatures up to 85 °C with an accuracy of ±2 °C. Those performances were obtained by a preliminary robust temperature calibration based on biotin-rhodamine fluorescence and by controlling the temperature map on the substrate through thermal modeling. The temperature accuracy was proved by inducing the expression of heat shock proteins (HSP) in a few NIH-3T3 cells through a confined and precise temperature rise. Our device is therefore effective to locally induce a heat shock response with almost single-cell resolution. Furthermore, we show that cells heated at a higher temperature than the one of heat shock remain alive without producing HSP. Electrode deposition being one of the most common engineering processes, the fabrication of electrode arrays with a simple control circuit is clearly within reach for parallel testing. This should enable the study of several key mechanisms such as cell heat shock, death or signaling. In nanomedicine, controlled drug release by external stimuli such as for example temperature has attracted much attention. Our device could allow fast and efficient testing of thermoactivable drug delivery systems.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biomedical Engineering