Micropatterned microfluidics: dendronized fluorosurfactants for highly stable emulsions
We design surfactants that form robust microdroplets with improved high stability (in PCR thermal cycling) and resistance to inter-droplet transfer (of fluorescent dye salts, drugs, etc) using dendritic oligo-glycerol-based surfactants with a high degree of inter-and intramolecular hydrogen bonding.
Fluorosurfactant-stabilized microfluidic droplets are widely used as pico- to nanoliter volume reactors in chemistry and biology. However, current surfactants cannot completely prevent the inter-droplet transfer of small organic molecules encapsulated or produced inside the droplets. In addition, the microdroplets typically coalesce at temperatures higher than 80 °C. Therefore, the use of droplet-based platforms for ultrahigh-throughput combination drug screening and polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-based rare mutation detection has been limited. Here, we provide insights into designing surfactants that form robust microdroplets with improved stability and resistance to inter-droplet transfer. We used a panel of dendritic oligo-glycerol-based surfactants to demonstrate that a high degree of inter-and intramolecular hydrogen bonding, as well as the dendritic architecture, contribute to high droplet stability in PCR thermal cycling and minimize the inter-droplet transfer of the water-soluble fluorescent dye sodium fluorescein salt and the drug doxycycline. (Dendronized fluorosurfactant for highly stable water-in-fluorinated oil emulsions with minimal inter-droplet transfer of small molecules. Nat Commun 10, 4546 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-019-12462-5)
Related reading:https://orcid.org/0000-0001-7114-1095 https://www.nature.com/articles/s41467-019-12462-5 https://www.nature.com/articles/s41578-020-00247-y https://www.nature.com/articles/s41467-021-21436-5 https://bioengineeringcommunity.nature.com/posts/nature-derived-2-dimensional-materials-for-cancer-therapy-and-sustainable-solutions https://bioengineeringcommunity.nature.com/posts/tackling-covid-19-with-materials-science
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Dr. Xingcai Zhang, Harvard/MIT Research Fellow; Science Writer/Editorial (Advisory) Board Member for Springer Nature, Elsevier, Materials Today, Royal Society of Chemistry, Wiley; Nature Nano Ambassador with 5 STEM degrees/strong background in sustainable Nature-derived/inspired/mimetic materials for biomed/sensing/catalysis/energy/environment applications, with around 100 high-impact journal publications in Nature Reviews Materials (featured cover paper), etc. orcid.org/0000-0001-7114-1095 https://scholar.google.com/citations?hl=en&user=2vDraMoAAAAJ&view_op=list_works&sortby=pubdate