Automated dielectrophoretic tweezers-based force spectroscopy system in a microfluidic device

Min Hyung Kim, Jeongjick Lee, Kihwan Nam, In Soo Park, Myeonggu Son, Hyunchul Ko, Sangyoup Lee, Sung Yoon, Woo Jin Chang, Sei Young Lee, Young Ro Yoon, Sang Woo Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


We reported an automated dielectrophoretic (DEP) tweezers-based force spectroscopy system to examine intermolecular weak binding interactions, which consists of three components: (1) interdigitated electrodes and micro-sized polystyrene particles used as DEP tweezers and probes inside a microfluidic device, along with an arbitrary function generator connected to a high voltage amplifier; (2) microscopy hooked up to a high-speed charge coupled device (CCD) camera with an image acquisition device; and (3) a computer aid control system based on the LabVIEW program. Using this automated system, we verified the measurement reliability by measuring intermolecular weak binding interactions, such as hydrogen bonds and Van der Waals interactions. In addition, we alsoobserved the linearity of the force loading rates, which is applied to the probes by the DEP tweezers, by varying the number of voltage increment steps and thus affecting the linearity of the force loading rates. This system provides a simple and low-cost platform to investigate intermolecular weak binding interactions.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2272
JournalSensors (Switzerland)
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Oct 4

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Acknowledgments: This research was supported by the Basic Science Research Program through the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) funded by the Ministry of Science, ICT & Future Planning ((NRF-2017R1A2B2002076, NRF-2013R1A2A2A03005767, NRF-2013R1A1A2053613), and the Yonsei University Future-Leading Research Initiative of 2015 (Grant 2015-22-0059), Korea.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 by the authors; Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.


  • Dielectrophoresis
  • Force loading rate
  • Force spectroscopy
  • Intermolecular weak binding interactions

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Information Systems
  • Biochemistry
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Instrumentation
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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