Increased retention of cardiac cells to a glass substrate through streptavidin-biotin affinity

Kara A. Davis, Jensen Z. Goh, Andrea H. Sebastian, Brooke M. Ahern, Christine A. Trinkle, Jonathan Satin, Ahmed Abdel-Latif, Brad J. Berron

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


In vitro analysis of primary isolated adult cardiomyocyte physiological processes often involves optical imaging of dye-loaded cells on a glass substrate. However, when exposed to rapid solution changes, primary cardiomyocytes often move to compromise quantitative measures. Improved immobilization of cells to glass would permit higher throughput assays. Here, we engineer the peripheral membrane of cardiomyocytes with biotin to anchor cardiomyocytes to borosilicate glass coverslips functionalized with streptavidin. We use a rat cardiac myoblast cell line to determine general relationships between processing conditions, ligand density on the cell and the glass substrate, cellular function, and cell retention under shear flow. Use of the streptavidin-biotin system allows for more than 80% retention of cardiac myoblasts under conventional rinsing procedures, while unmodified cells are largely rinsed away. The adhesion system enables the in-field retention of cardiac cells during rapid fluid changes using traditional pipetting or a modern microfluidic system at a flow rate of 160 mL/min. Under fluid flow, the surface-engineered primary adult cardiomyocytes are retained in the field of view of the microscope, while unmodified cells are rinsed away. Importantly, the engineered cardiomyocytes are functional following adhesion to the glass substrate, where contractions are readily observed. When applying this adhesion system to cardiomyocyte functional analysis, we measure calcium release transients by caffeine induction at an 80% success rate compared to 20% without surface engineering.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)17523-17530
Number of pages8
JournalACS Omega
Issue number27
StatePublished - Jul 13 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 The Authors. American Chemical Society.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • General Chemical Engineering


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