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Microfluidic Devices

Microfluidics are a type of devices with micro-scale channels molded or engraved that allow the precise manipulation of fluids at the sub-millimeter scale. These devices allow for fluids to be transported, seperated, and mixed with high degrees of precision. Often made of materials like glass and silicone, microfluidic devices are usually optically transparent. This makes them extremely useful in biomedical engineering applications as they are accessible to microscopes and lasers.  

In biomedical engineering, microfluidic devices are most commonly used in two applications:

  • Lab-on-a-chip – Miniature devices that are able to carry out analysis commonly performed by an entire laboratory

  • Organs-on-chip – Miniature cell/tissue culture devices that aim to reproduce key functions of living organs

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