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Research Papers

Cylindrical Single-Degree-of-Freedom Spatial Mechanisms for Cell Restraint

[+] Author and Article Information
Gregory H. Teichert

 Department of Mechanical Engineering, Brigham Young University, Provo, UT 84602gregteichert@gmail.com

Quentin T. Aten

 NanoInjection Technologies, LLC, Salt Lake City, UT 84121quentin.aten@nanoinjectiontech.com

Sandra H. Burnett

 Department of Microbiology & Molecular Biology, Brigham Young University, Provo, UT 84602sandra_burnett@byu.edu

Larry L. Howell

Department of Mechanical Engineering,  Brigham Young University, Provo, UT 84602lhowell@byu.edu

Brian D. Jensen1

Department of Mechanical Engineering,  Brigham Young University, Provo, UT 84602bdjensen@byu.edu

1

Corresponding author.

J. Mechanisms Robotics 4(2), 021011 (Apr 25, 2012) (9 pages) doi:10.1115/1.4006189 History: Received November 15, 2010; Revised January 30, 2012; Published April 25, 2012; Online April 25, 2012

Many transgenic animal production techniques require egg cells to be held in place during injection of the transgene. This paper presents a micro-electromechanical systems (MEMS) mechanism that provides cell support, self-centers the cell, and requires a single linear input for actuation. This restraint device uses an innovative spatial mechanism, termed a cylindrical mechanism. The kinematics and design of the restraint are discussed. The MEMS cell restraints were fabricated using a surface micromachining process, after which the mechanism’s cell support, self-centering of the cell, and motion were verified.

Copyright © 2012 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
Topics: Mechanisms , Design
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References

Figures

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Figure 1

A glass holding pipette is commonly used to restrain an egg cell during DNA injection

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Figure 2

Scanning electron micrograph of the cell restraint mechanism holding a latex bead (100 μm diameter) that is approximately the same size as a mouse zygote

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Figure 3

This 3D model demonstrates the motion of a basic cylindrical mechanism

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Figure 4

As the slider is displaced along one axis, the coupler link translates upward, inward, and forward

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Figure 5

Design constraints for the cylindrical mechanism involve the pivoting links, pin joints, and the slider’s axis of displacement

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Figure 6

Vector loop for a basic cylindrical mechanism (top view)

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Figure 7

Vector loop for a generalized cylindrical mechanism (top view)

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Figure 8

This 3D model demonstrates the motion of the cylindrical cell restraint mechanism

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Figure 9

This cell restraint uses two symmetric cylindrical mechanisms (top view of kinematic diagram)

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Figure 10

Top view of a cylindrical cell restraint mechanism in its initial position

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Figure 11

The pivoting link can be designed with arcs to provide support to the cell along a vertical plane

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Figure 12

This cell restraint demonstrates the ability to use two cylindrical mechanisms that are not symmetrical to each other

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Figure 13

The distance between the grounded pivoting links can be widened to increase the working area for injections

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Figure 14

It is possible to add a crank-slider as an alternative support to the cell during insertion

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Figure 15

It is possible to add another set of cylindrical mechanisms to the cell restraint for further support

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Figure 16

Scanning electron micrographs showing the cell restraint in its initial and actuated positions

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Figure 17

Scanning electron micrograph of the two layer scissor hinge used in the cell restraint. Note also the grounded hinge joint at the base of the pivoting link.

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Figure 18

Scanning electron micrograph of the cell restraint holding a latex bead

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Figure 19

Scanning electron micrograph of the cell restraint with pivoting link arcs extending above the coupler links

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Figure 20

The MEMS cell restraint is used to capture a mouse zygote

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Figure 21

A probe is used to push the cell and test the ability of the device to prevent rotations

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