For understanding cells functionalities and their communications, there is a need for highly sensitive cell analysis platforms capable of assessing non-specific chemicals on the surface and in the vicinity of cells. We report a microfluidic system integrating dielectrophoresis and surface enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) for the trapping and real time monitoring of cell functions in isolated and grouped cell clusters. Yeast cells are coated with silver nanoparticles to enable highly sensitive SERS analysis. The SERS responses of cells are examined under various conditions: live vs. dead and isolated vs. grouped. This work illustrates the feasibility of the system for in situ cell monitoring and analysis of secreted chemicals during their growth, metabolism, proliferation and apoptosis.
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