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ECIS system

ECIS system

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A morphological biosensor used to measure cell behavior which employs a label-free, non-invasive method to electronically monitor cells grown in tissue culture.

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  • Description
  • Publications

ECIS system

  • Non-invasive cell-based assays in culture medium
  • Measurement of changes in cell morphology
  • Multiple, real-time measurements

Applications

  • Cell attachment 
  • Wound healing and cell migration   
  • Signal transduction 
  • Cell behavior under flow 
  • Measurement of metastatic potential 
  • Measurement and modeling of endothelial cell barrier function
  • Toxicological screening

Cells grown on an ECIS electrode

Cells grown on an ECIS electrode

The ECIS method represents a non-invasive approach to monitor living cells in vitro. It measures the change in impedance of a small electrode over time.

In this system, cells are grown on small gold film electrodes carrying very weak AC signals. As cells attach and spread on these electrodes, their insulating membranes block and constrain the current flow, resulting in measured variations in the electrode impedance. Any changes in the environment, leading to morphological changes of the cell, alter the current paths and can be readily detected by the instrumentation. These changes may be due to the addition of compounds, changes in the physical environment (for example perfusion, transfection events, viral infections, and the addition of other cells).

The ECIS system gathers continuous real-time measurements without the need for any labels. Furthermore, since the weak AC currents used during measurement have no effect upon the cells, this method is totally non-invasive.

Basic principle of ECIS measurement

ESIC major systems

  • The ECIS Model
  • The ECIS Model Zθ (theta)

The ECIS Model Z system monitors the impedance of small 250-micrometer diameter electrodes used as substrates for cell growth. The ECIS Model Zθ system interprets complex impedance as both resistance and capacitance, and can report these values as well as simple impedance. This data can then be further refined using a model that provides information on the barrier function of cell layers (Rb), the spacing beneath the cells (α), and capacitance of the cell membrane (Cm).

     ibidi_ecis_zo.jpg
Impedance Simple impedance Z Complex impedance Z, R and C
Current Constant current
Well capacity 16 or 96 wells
Frequency Maximum data acquisition rate (single frequency): 5 point / sec Ability to model multi-frequency data (barrier function)
Multi-frequency measurements 11 frequencies ranging from 500 Hz to 64 kHz (10 seconds per well acquisition rate) 11 frequencies ranging from 50 Hz to 100 kHz (10 seconds per well acquisition rate)
Wounding / Electroporation current 8 step control 256 step control
Frequency accuracy within 1 % within 0,002 %

Flow option

Ability to measure under dynamic flow conditions - ibidi Pump system

 

Dimensions [mm] 330 x 114 x 330 438 x 216 x 508
Weight [kg] 2,7 18
Operating system Windows 7, Vista, XP, Mac OSX (10.5)

ECIS cultureware

The ECIS Cultureware consists of sterile disposable electrode arrays containing gold film electrodes. The gold layer is thin enough to allow microscopic observation of the cells using a standard inverted tissue culture microscope. The ECIS electrode array is placed in an array holder located in the incubator.

The cultureware includes:

  • Standard 8 well arrays
  • Standard 96 well arrays
  • Specialty arrays (e.g., flow, chemotaxis)

Applied Biophysics offers two different substrates for the ECIS cultureware. The classic Lexan substrate offers superb imaging quality through the thin gold layer. It gives best results if ECIS measurements are combined with microscopy.

In 2013, Applied Biophysics has developed a substrate, made out of PET, for all arrays. In these arrays, the gold electrode is located on 254 µm thick PET material and is optically clear, so that cells can be viewed on an inverted microscope.This base material has become the new standard. With the PET substrate, Applied Biophysics is offering an economic alternative to the already existing Lexan substrates.

Types of ECIS cultureware

8W1E

Each of the 8 wells contains a single circular 250 µm diameter measuring electrode*.

Applications include:

  • Cell migration measurements via automated wound healing
  • Studying effects of agents upon cell morphology and cell motions (i.e., micromotion)
  • Studies of very sparse cultures, even single cells

8W10E

Each of the 8 wells contains ten 250 µm diameter measuring electrodes connected in parallel on a common gold pad*.

Applications include:

  • Recording the activities of more cells over a larger area of the substrate
  • Studying the effects of agents upon overall impedance
  • Reducing fluctuations in impedance due to micromotion that may interfere with some assays

8W10E+

Each of the 8 wells contains forty 250 µm diameter measuring electrodes connected in parallel on a common gold pad*. The array records the activities of more cells over a larger area of the substrate. Fluctuations in impedance are reduced, thus micromotion might not be observed.

Applications include:

  • Cell-ECM protein interactions
  • Invasion detection of endothelial cell layers by metastatic cells
  • Signal transduction assays
  • Barrier function measurements 

8W1E DD

This array is nearly identical to the 8W1E standard array but the active electrodes* come in four different diameters (two wells of each size). The diameters are 250 (standard), 100, 50 and 25 µm.

Application:

  • Monitoring fewer cells with higher sensitivity

8W2x1E (Medusa)

This array contains 8 individual wells, with each well having two independent standard measuring electrodes*. This allows researchers to perform duplicate measurements within a single well. When connected to the array holder, only the upper four wells are measured. To use the other four wells, the array is turned around and the contact pads at the other end are connected.

Applications include:

  • Wound healing studies
  • Migration experiments
  • Electroporation

8WCP

Each of the 8 wells contains two sets of four 7.5 mm x 0.5 mm rectangular electrodes located on inter-digitated fingers so as to provide cell measurements upon a total of 8 large electrodes.

Application:

  • Cell proliferation assays

8W2LE

Each of the 8 wells contains a single 667 µm x 150 µm linear electrode whose area is equal to that of our standard 250 µm circular electrodes.

Applications include:

  • Cell migration
  • Wound healing assays 

8W1LE ChemoTaxis

This array is used in chemotaxis measurements as first described by Hadjout, N. et al. in Biotechniques, 31 (5): 1130-1138 (2001) . The measuring electrode in this array is a thin gold line between two registry marks*.

96W1E+ | 96W10idf | 96W20idf  

Each of the 96 wells in a standard plate configuration contains two circular 350 µm diameter measuring electrodes (96W1E+) or has an inter-digitated finger configuration (96W10idf, 96W20idf). These arrays have been designed for high throughput assays. The exceptional signal-to-noise ratio allows studies of very sparse cultures, even single cells.

Applications include:

  • Signal transduction assays
  • Barrier function measurement
  • Cell migration and proliferation

ECIS Flow Array 1E | 10E

A specialized array with 8 active ECIS electrodes* located in the central region at the base of a flow channel (50 mm in length, 5 mm in width, around 0.36 mm in height). Flow characteristics are comparable to the µ-Slide I 0.4 Luer.

Applications include:

  • Investigation of cells under perfusion conditions 
  • Studying cells under defined shear stress 
  • Formation of tight junctions like the brain blood barrier

Please note: The basis for the ECIS Flow array is an ibidi µ-Slide 0.1 Luer. The indicated height of approximately 360 µm is the sum of 100 µm channel height and a 260 µm layer of glue. For other channel heights, please contact us.

Customize your ECIS arrays

If you are interested in other electrode sizes and configurations, please contact us – we will be happy to work with you on your specific needs.

All arrays can be ordered without upper chambers (NC).

Ordering information

Cat. No. ECIS system - Description Pcs./Box
71616 ECIS Model Z: ECIS Model Z station controller, Elevated Field Module (i.e., a pulse system for automated wound healing or electroporation studies), software for data gathering and analysis, laptop 1
71617 ECIS Model Z Theta: ECIS Model Z Theta station controller, Elevated Field Module (i.e., a pulse system for automated wound healing or electroporation studies), software for data gathering and analysis, including model calculations, laptop 1
71612 ECIS 16 Well Station: a holder with two slots for ECIS Cultureware 8 well arrays, and a data processing station 1
71614 ECIS 96 Well Station: a holder with one slot for ECIS Cultureware 96 well arrays, and a data processing station 1
71621 Upgrade ECIS 96 Well Station: upgrade to bed of nails on 96 well array station 1
71001 ECIS Flow Module: perfusion system for ECIS flow arrays, ideal for defined flow rates and shear stress studies of endothelial cells 1
71609 ECIS Transwell Measurement System: permanent transwell holder to run TEER measurements. Made for filter-based assays. Contains a lower Filter holder base and an upper counter electrode system, reusable 1
Cat. No. ECIS cultureware - Description Pcs./Box
72001 ECIS Cultureware 8W1E PET: 8 well array with 1 electrode per well, ideal for wound healing and migration studies, transparent PET bottom 6
72002 ECIS Cultureware 8W2X1E, Medusa PET: 8 well array with 2 individual electrodes per well, ideal for reference measurements, transparent PET bottom 6
72005 ECIS Cultureware 8W2LE PET: 8 well line wounding array with a single 667 µm x 150 µm linear electrode, ideal for wound healing and migration studies, transparent PET bottom 6
72010 ECIS Cultureware 8W10E PET: 8 well array with 10 electrodes per well, ideal for adhesion studies and other cellular assays, transparent PET bottom 6
72021 ECIS Cultureware 8W1LE PET: 8 well chemotaxis array with 1 electrode per well, used for monitoring the movement of cells in response to chemical gradients, transparent PET bottom 6
72030 ECIS Cultureware 8WCP PET: 8 well array with rectangular electrodes on inter-digitated fingers sampling over the well’s entire bottom, ideal for cell proliferation assays, transparent PET bottom 6
72040 ECIS Cultureware 8W10E+ PET: 8 well array with 40 electrodes per well, ideal for adhesion studies and other cellular assays, transparent PET bottom 6
72096 ECIS Cultureware 96W1E+ PET: 96 well array with 2 electrodes per well, ideal for wound healing and migration studies, transparent PET bottom 6
72097 ECIS Cultureware 96W10idf PET: 96 well array with 10 electrodes per well, ideal for adhesion studies and other cellular assays, transparent PET bottom 6
72098 ECIS Cultureware 96W20idf PET: 96 well array with 20 electrodes per well, ideal for adhesion studies and other cellular assays, transparent PET bottom 6
70101 ECIS Flow array 1E channel µ-Slide with 8 x 1 electrodes: specially designed for endothelial cell studies and cell - cell interaction at defined flow rates (ca. 0,35 mm channel height, other channel heights available on request) 6
70110 ECIS Flow array 10E channel µ-Slide with 8 x 10 electrodes: specially designed for endothelial cell studies and cell - cell interaction at defined flow rates (ca. 0,35 mm channel height, other channel heights available on request) 6

 

For more than 800 scientific publications using the ECIS technology please visit www.biophysics.com.