In this work, we present a process for the fabrication of meso-scale hydrogel-based lipid bilayer arrays. The hydrogels support lipid monolayers at an oil-water interface, and when brought together, form stable bilayers. The substrates are formed using 3D printed molds and include built-in, customizable circuits patterned with silver paint. The system can be adapted to varying network sizes and circuit designs, and new arrays are fabricated quickly and inexpensively using common laboratory techniques. An enclosed 3×3 array with 3 mm spacing between neighboring hydrogels and electrodes to individually examine each bilayer has been created using this method. An alternative test setup was also developed to better observe the formation of bilayers in a small array. Using this setup, two bilayers were formed simultaneously, demonstrating the feasibility of this type of system and providing valuable information for expanding and improving the enclosed network. Many of the design concepts presented here can be adapted for use at smaller scales using microfabrication techniques.
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A Hydrogel-Based Droplet Interface Lipid Bilayer Network
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Edgerton, A, Najem, J, & Leo, D. "A Hydrogel-Based Droplet Interface Lipid Bilayer Network." Proceedings of the ASME 2014 Conference on Smart Materials, Adaptive Structures and Intelligent Systems. Volume 2: Mechanics and Behavior of Active Materials; Integrated System Design and Implementation; Bioinspired Smart Materials and Systems; Energy Harvesting. Newport, Rhode Island, USA. September 8–10, 2014. V002T06A011. ASME. https://doi.org/10.1115/SMASIS2014-7580
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