Microfluidic constructs have proven to have many important applications. Small sample sizes can be sufficient to give a large number of laboratory results, for instance, in "lab-on-a-chip" technologies, such as those developed by Caliper. Testing and processing previously available only in specialized laboratories under highly controlled conditions with expert technicians are now available for field work using these new technologies. However, these highly minimized fluid managing devices are typically very expensive, and so are of limited availability to many potential applications.
Researchers at the University of California, Berkeley achieve patterned Agarose micro-structures using photolithography and oxygen plasma. The resulting Agarose micro-structures can be then rehydrated back into the original form, if the proper conditions are maintained during processing.
Related to B09-061 and B09-058