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Seal Formation in Silicon Planar Patch-Clamp Microstructures

Curtis, J.C., Baldwin, K., Dworak, B.J., Stevenson, J., Delivopoulos, E. ORCID:, MacLeod, N.K. and Murray, A.F. (2008) Seal Formation in Silicon Planar Patch-Clamp Microstructures. Journal of Microelectromechanical Systems, 17 (4). pp. 974-983. ISSN 1057-7157

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1109/JMEMS.2008.924270


This paper presents a microfabricated planar patch-clamp electrode design and looks at the impact of several physical characteristics on seal formation. The device consists of a patch aperture, 1.5-2.5 mum in diameter and 7-12 mum in depth, with a reverse-side deep-etched 80-mum well. The patch aperture was coated with either thermal oxide or plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposited (PECVD) SiO2. Some of the thermal oxide devices were converted into protruding nozzle structures, and some were boron-doped. Seal formation was tested with cultured N2a neuroblastoma cells. The PECVD oxide devices produced an average seal resistance of 34 MOmega(n = 24), and the thermal oxide devices produced an average seal resistance of 96 MOmega(n = 59). Seal resistance was found to positively correlate with patch aperture depth. Whole-cell recordings were obtained from 14% of cells tested with the thermal oxide devices, including a single recording where a gigaohm seal was obtained.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Life Sciences > School of Biological Sciences > Department of Bio-Engineering
ID Code:33922

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