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Neuropathic pain is characterized by mechanical allodynia induced by low-threshold myelinated Aβ-fiber activation. The original gate theory of pain proposes that inhibitory interneurons in the lamina II of the spinal dorsal horn (DH) act as "gate control" units for preventing the interaction between innocuous and nociceptive signals. However, our(More)
Two novel microfluidic cell culture schemes, a vertically-layered set-up and a four chamber set-up, were developed for co-culturing central nervous system (CNS) neurons and glia. The cell chambers in these devices were separated by pressure-enabled valve barriers, which permitted us to control communication between the two cell types. The unique design of(More)
In this study, we developed a microfluidic cell co-culture platform that permits individual manipulation of the microenvironment of different cell types. Separation of the cell culture chambers is controlled by changing the position of a microfabricated valve, which serves as a barrier between the chambers. This unique feature of our platform allowed us to(More)
We developed a cell-culture/biosensor platform consisting of aptamer-modified Au electrodes integrated with reconfigurable microfluidics for monitoring of transforming growth factor-beta 1 (TGF-β1), an important inflammatory and pro-fibrotic cytokine. Aptamers were thiolated, labeled with redox reporters, and self-assembled on gold surfaces. The biosensor(More)
A grating-coupled porous silicon (PSi) waveguide with an integrated polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) flow cell is demonstrated as a platform for near real-time detection of chemical and biological molecules. This sensor platform not only allows for quantification of molecular binding events, but also provides a means to improve understanding of diffusion and(More)
The approaches for maintaining hepatocytes in vitro are aimed at recapitulating aspects of the native liver microenvironment through the use of co-cultures, surface coatings and 3D spheroids. This study highlights the effects of spatial confinement-a less studied component of the in vivo microenvironment. We demonstrate that hepatocytes cultured in(More)
Liver injury modulates local microenvironment, triggering production of signals that instruct stem cell fate choices. In this study, we employed a microfluidic co-culture system to recreate important interactions in the liver stem cell niche, those between adult hepatocytes and liver progenitor cells (LPCs). We demonstrate that pluripotent stem cell-derived(More)
Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) are widely implicated in inflammation and tissue remodeling associated with various neurodegenerative diseases and play an important role in nociception and allodynia. Extracellular Matrix Metalloproteinase Inducer (EMMPRIN) plays a key regulatory role for MMP activities. However, the role of EMMPRIN in the development of(More)