Colloquium: “Dielectrophoresis and Electrophysiology” – Wednesday Sept. 11, 2019 at 3 PM

Professor Erin Henslee
Department of Engineering
Wake Forest University
Winston-Salem, NC
George P. Williams, Jr. Lecture Hall, (Olin 101)
Wednesday, Sept. 11, 2019, at 3:00 PM

There will be a reception in the Olin Lounge at approximately 4 PM following the colloquium. All interested persons are cordially invited to attend.


Dielectrophoresis (DEP), which is the induced motion of particles in non-uniform AC electric fields, is a label-free assay capable of characterizing cells based on their electrophysiological response. By varying the frequency of the electric field, it is possible to produce a profile of cell polarisability; the resultant electrophysiological spectra allow the determination of electrophysiological parameters including effective membrane conductance (Geff, -indicative of ionic transport across the membrane and on its surface), capacitance (Ceff, -indicative of membrane morphology and/or composition) and cytoplasmic conductivity (σcyt, indicative of free ionic concentration within the cytoplasm). In my work, I have applied DEP characterization as a rapid analysis tool in cancer diagnostics, circadian biomarkers, as well as characterizing stages of programed cell death (apoptosis) and drug efficacy. For this talk I will introduce 3DEP, the platform I was part of creating for this analysis, as well as some of the applications and future directions of the work.

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