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In many in vitro experiments, primary cells are harvested from an animal species to undergo experimental manipulation and subsequent analysis. Cell sorters are a luxury to have after cell harvesting to ensure pure populations of cells. Recently, it was discovered that different cell types adhere to cell culture dishes at different strengths. This observation was utilized in the invention of a cell sorting system that sorts cells based on this adhesion strength difference. The resulting system is marketable at under $2000, compared to $50000 plus for current commercially available systems, and is the first commercially-oriented cell adhesion strength based cell sorter. The system allows for use of tissue culture flasks, a tool that any researcher using cells will be very familiar with, that have been customized with a removable bottom. After cells are adhered, the bottom is removed and placed into the cell sorting system and sealed with a removable sealing putty. Flow is imparted to the cells, generating a shear force over the surface of the cells, lifting the cells and depositing them into a centrifuge tube. Prior experiments have shown this system to have a cell purity and cell viability greater than currently available solutions without the use of expensive antibodies and using equipment available at a fraction of the cost.

Publication Date



cell sorting, flow culture, adhesion strength


Biomedical Engineering and Bioengineering | Engineering

Faculty Advisor/Mentor

Dr. Christopher Lemmon

VCU Capstone Design Expo Posters


© The Author(s)

Date of Submission

May 2018

Low Cost, Adhesion Strength Based Cell Sorter [View Image]


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