We have designed and characterized a poly-dimethyl-siloxane (PDMS) based microfluidic device called MiMiC™ that enables time-lapse study of cell migration. Cell migration is a key step of malignant metastasis during cancer progression. The device mimics the narrow confines the cells need to traverse and the microenvironments that are similar to the ones inside human body. Photolithography and soft lithography processes were used to fabricate the microfluidic devices. The device consists of two separate chambers connected by microfluidic channels allowing introduction of cells in one chamber and chemoattractants in the other. The response of lung-metastasized prostate cancer (PC-3-ML) cells and their migration response to chemoattractants were observed and analyzed. The numbers of cells under migration were determined from time-lapse images and compared to control groups. Our microfluidic assays provide advantages over the traditional Boyden chambers such as time-lapse observation, use of smaller amounts of reagents and direct assessment of cells under migration.

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