Microfluidic Generation of Monodisperse, Structurally Homogeneous Alginate Microgels for Cell Encapsulation and 3D Cell Culture

Adv Healthc Mater. 2015 Aug 5;4(11):1628-33. doi: 10.1002/adhm.201500021. Epub 2015 Jun 3.


Monodisperse alginate microgels (10-50 μm) are created via droplet-based microfluidics by a novel crosslinking procedure. Ionic crosslinking of alginate is induced by release of chelated calcium ions. The process separates droplet formation and gelation reaction enabling excellent control over size and homogeneity under mild reaction conditions. Living mesenchymal stem cells are encapsulated and cultured in the generated 3D microenvironments.

Keywords: alginate; cells; encapsulation; microfluidics; microgels.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Alginates / chemistry*
  • Calcium Carbonate / chemistry
  • Cell Culture Techniques
  • Gels / chemistry*
  • Glucuronic Acid / chemistry
  • Hexuronic Acids / chemistry
  • Microfluidic Analytical Techniques / instrumentation
  • Microfluidic Analytical Techniques / methods*
  • Microspheres
  • Nanoparticles / chemistry


  • Alginates
  • Gels
  • Hexuronic Acids
  • Glucuronic Acid
  • Calcium Carbonate