The MainSTREAM component platform: a holistic approach to microfluidic system design

David Sabourin, Peder Skafte-Pedersen, Martin Jensen Søe, Mette Kirstine Hemmingsen, Massimo Alberti, Vasile Coman, Jesper Petersen, Jenny Emnéus, Jörg Peter Kutter, Detlef Snakenborg, Flemming Voldum Jørgensen, Christian Clausen, Kim Holmstrøm, Martin Dufva

    25 Citations (Scopus)


    A microfluidic component library for building systems driving parallel or serial microfluidic-based assays is presented. The components are a miniaturized eight-channel peristaltic pump, an eight-channel valve, sample-to-waste liquid management, and interconnections. The library of components was tested by constructing various systems supporting perfusion cell culture, automated DNA hybridizations, and in situ hybridizations. The results showed that the MainSTREAM components provided (1) a rapid, robust, and simple method to establish numerous fluidic inputs and outputs to various types of reaction chips; (2) highly parallel pumping and routing/valving capability; (3) methods to interface pumps and chip-to-liquid management systems; (4) means to construct a portable system; (5) reconfigurability/flexibility in system design; (6) means to interface to microscopes; and (7) compatibility with tested biological methods. It was found that LEGO Mindstorms motors, controllers, and software were robust, inexpensive, and an accessible choice as compared with corresponding custom-made actuators. MainSTREAM systems could operate continuously for weeks without leaks, contamination, or system failures. In conclusion, the MainSTREAM components described here meet many of the demands on components for constructing and using microfluidics systems.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalJournal of laboratory automation
    Issue number3
    Pages (from-to)212-28
    Number of pages17
    Publication statusPublished - Jun 2013


    • Animals
    • Automation, Laboratory
    • Cell Culture Techniques
    • Cost-Benefit Analysis
    • HeLa Cells
    • Holistic Health
    • Humans
    • In Situ Hybridization
    • Microfluidic Analytical Techniques
    • Miniaturization
    • Point-of-Care Systems
    • Reproducibility of Results


    Dive into the research topics of 'The MainSTREAM component platform: a holistic approach to microfluidic system design'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this