Magnetophoretic sorting of microdroplets with different microalgal cell densities for rapid isolation of fast growing strains

Young Joon Sung, Jaoon Young Hwan Kim, Hong Il Choi, Ho Seok Kwak, Sang Jun Sim

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34 Citations (Scopus)


Microalgae-unicellular photosynthetic organisms-have received increasing attention for their ability to biologically convert CO2 into valuable products. The commercial use of microalgae requires screening strains to improve the biomass productivity to achieve a high-Throughput. Here, we developed a microfluidic method that uses a magnetic field to separate the microdroplets containing different concentrations of microalgal cells. The separation efficiency is maximized using the following parameters that influence the amount of lateral displacement of the microdroplets: magnetic nanoparticle concentration, flow rate of droplets, x-and y-Axis location of the magnet, and diameter of the droplets. Consequently, 91.90% of empty, 87.12% of low-, and 90.66% of high-density droplets could be separated into different outlets through simple manipulation of the magnetic field in the microfluidic device. These results indicate that cell density-based separation of microdroplets using a magnetic force can provide a promising platform to isolate microalgal species with a high growth performance.

Original languageEnglish
Article number10390
JournalScientific reports
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Dec 1

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was mainly supported by a grant (2014M1A8A1049278) from Korea CCS R&D Center of the NRF, funded by the Korea government (Ministry of Science and ICT). S.J.S. acknowledges with a grant from the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) (No. NRF-2016R1A2A1A05005465/2010-0027955).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 The Author(s).

ASJC Scopus subject areas

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