1. Microfluidic Cell-Squeezing Device Opens New Possibilities for Cell-Based Vaccines

    "Using a microfluidic device, MIT researchers were able to overcome this genetically programmed barrier to antigen uptake — by squeezing the B cells.  Through “CellSqueeze,” the device platform originally developed at MIT, the researchers pass a suspension of B cells and target antigen through tiny, parallel channels etched on a chip. A positive-pressure system moves the suspension through these channels, which gradually narrow, applying a gentle pressure to the B cells. This “squeeze” opens small, temporary holes in their membranes, allowing the target antigen to enter by diffusion."

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  2. Quotes

    1. We wanted to remove an important barrier in using B cells as an antigen-presenting cell population, helping them complement or replace dendritic cells.
    2. The antigen-presenting capabilities of B cells have often been underestimated, but they are being increasingly appreciated for their practical advantages in therapies.
    3. Our dream is to spawn out a whole class of therapies which involve taking out your own cells, telling them what to do, and putting them back into your body to fight your disease, whatever that may be.
    4. We envision a future system, if we can take advantage of its microfluidic nature, as a bedside or field-deployable device.
    5. Down the road, you could potentially get enough cells from just a normal syringe-based blood draw, run it through a bedside device that has the antigen you want to vaccinate against, and then you'd have the vaccine.
    6. We wanted to remove an important barrier in using B cells as an antigen-presenting cell population, helping them complement or replace dendritic cells.
    7. The antigen-presenting capabilities of B cells have often been underestimated, but they are being increasingly appreciated for their practical advantages in therapies.
    8. Our dream is to spawn out a whole class of therapies which involve taking out your own cells, telling them what to do, and putting them back into your body to fight your disease, whatever that may be.
    9. We envision a future system, if we can take advantage of its microfluidic nature, as a bedside or field-deployable device.
    10. Down the road, you could potentially get enough cells from just a normal syringe-based blood draw, run it through a bedside device that has the antigen you want to vaccinate against, and then you'd have the vaccine.
  3. Authors