This review presents an overview of literature that describes the applications of microfluidics to assay individual cells. We quantify the content of an individual mammalian cell, so that we can understand what criteria a single-cell assay must satisfy to be successful. We put in context the justification for single-cell assays and identify the characteristics that are relevant to single-cell assays. We review the literature from the past 24 months that describe the methods that use microfabrication-conventional or otherwise-and microfluidics in particular to study individual cells, and we present our views on how an increasing emphasis on three-dimensional cell culture and the demonstration of the first chemically defined cell might impact single-cell assays.
Scopus Subject Areas
- Biomedical Engineering
- Materials Science(all)
- Condensed Matter Physics
- Fluid Flow and Transfer Processes
- Colloid and Surface Chemistry