Microfluidic Cell Encapsulation Service


Creative Biolabs is one of the well-recognized experts who are professional in applying advanced microfluidic chip technologies for a broad range of project objectives. Based on our advanced platform and extensive experience, now we can provide the novel microfluidic-based cell encapsulation service for our clients all over the world.

Introduction of Cell Encapsulation

The information collected over large populations of cells presents great potentials for cellular function study and this is typically accomplished using flow cytometry or fluorescence-activated cell sorter (FACS). However, there is no diffusional barrier between the cells, which makes it impossible to assay or sort cells based on the properties of secreted molecules. Using microfluidic devices, the individual cells in picoliter aqueous drops can be encapsulated, incubated and manipulated at rates of up to several hundred Hz. The modular approach with individual devices for different functions leads to increased robustness, as well as highly flexible and adaptable to a series of cell-based assays.

Microfluidic-Based Cell Encapsulation Technology

According to the single-cell encapsulation in a small and isolated volume, enhanced functionality could be achieved. The most efficient method to accomplish this is through the use of microfluidic devices to encapsulate the cells in monodisperse picoliter aqueous drops in an inert carrier fluid. Using the drop-based microfluidic devices, the single cells can be encapsulated in distinct pL-sized drops, while maintaining cell viability and healthy metabolism. Because of the restricted drop volume, the secreted molecules can rapidly attain detectable concentrations. In this case, the single cells can be encapsulated, incubated, manipulated, and analyzed. What’s more, the cells can be recovered from the drops and cultured.

Modular design of the microfluidic components. Fig.1 Modular design of the microfluidic components. (Köster, 2008)

Research of Microfluidic-Based Cell Encapsulation

In recent years, microfluidics-based alginate microgels present great potential for cell encapsulation in a high-throughput and controllable manner. There are two calcium complexes as crosslinkers for triggered gelation of alginate, including calcium–ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid (Ca-EDTA) and calcium–nitrilotriacetic (Ca-NTA). Compared with Ca-EDTA, Ca-NTA leads to significantly higher cell viability. In conclusion, microfluidic-based single-cell encapsulation can be further used for applications in tissue engineering and cell therapies.

Advantages of Microfluidic-Based Cell Encapsulation

With years of experience, our scientists have developed various microfluidic chips with the highest quality standards for different purposes. We can also offer custom solutions in case our standard chips do not meet your requirements. If you are interested in our services, please do not hesitate to contact us for more detailed information.


  1. Köster, S.; et al. Drop-based microfluidic devices for encapsulation of single cells. Lab on a Chip. 2008, 8(7): 1110-1115.
  2. Shao, F.; et al. Microfluidic encapsulation of single cells by alginate microgels using a trigger-gellified strategy. Frontiers in Bioengineering and Biotechnology. 2020, 8.

For Research Use Only. Not For Clinical Use.

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