The sample is hydro-dynamically focused to ensure that all cells, upon exiting a nozzle, pass through a laser in single-file. An electrostatic charge is applied to specific droplets containing cells that have been identified as members of a target population. Only charged droplets are then deflected away from the main fluid stream into collection vessels.
With no exposed fluid streams, droplets, nozzles or electrostatic charges, the entire cell sorting process takes place within a proprietary, chip-based microfluidic system. Hydrodynamic focusing ensures that cells pass the light excitation source in single file for accurate characterization. Diversion of the target cell-containing sample fluid is established through a fast fluidic-switch mechanism. The enclosed design supports sterile sorting and delivers a gentle, aerosol free method for cell purification.
The Cytonome Viva™ system finally breaks through these barriers, with the world’s smallest design incorporating standard charged droplet technology. All engineering support is now on-board the industry’s smallest platform, including all optics, fluidics, pressure sources, and computer interface.
Attempts at increasing sorting efficiency and speed have largely focused on higher stream pressures, higher cell concentrations and faster computer analysis. Yet the physics associated with single stream charged droplet sorting places theoretical limits on sorting performance, and today’s current single stream systems have effectively reached these limitations and their concomitant effects on cell integrity. Advancing far beyond them to address several of today’s industry needs is not practical with single stream designs.
Cytonome Hydris™ system sorting architecture bypasses these theoretical physical barriers and enables researchers to dramatically scale-up their sum total sorting speeds and thus overall cell purification yields. Using a proprietary multi-headed sorting design, traditional charged droplet sorting can now be scaled across a wide performance range as dictated by the user. Each sorting head can be operated and controlled as an independent system, or linked together as needs dictate.
The efficient yet gentle cell sorting of individual, sealed microchannels, when combined in great numbers, provides sum-total overall sorting speeds once only imagined, and in a safe and sterile manner. Each microchannel functions as a single ‘cell sorter’; when the performance of 24, 48 or 72 of these channels is combined, extremely fast sum total sorting speeds can be achieved without higher pressures, cell damage or aerosol creation.
Cytonome GigaSort™ system sorting architecture is unique and without peer in the industry. Using a proprietary, multi-channel microfluidics design, 24 or more individual microsorting channels are arrayed within single, sealed glass chip. Using a technology known as PicoPulseTM, cells of interest are gently deflected into collection channels by means of a fluid pulse, without the high pressures, shearing forces or sheath fluid limtations imposed by charged droplet nozzle design. Cells can be sorted in a variety of compatible fluids, and no aerosols are created during sorting.