Thermoplastic elastomer (Tpe)–poly(methyl methacrylate) (pmma) hybrid devices for active pumping pdms-free organ-on-a-chip systems

Publikation: Beitrag in FachzeitschriftForschungsartikelBeigetragenBegutachtung



Polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) has been used in microfluidic systems for years, as it can be easily structured and its flexibility makes it easy to integrate actuators including pneumatic pumps. In addition, the good optical properties of the material are well suited for analytical systems. In addition to its positive aspects, PDMS is well known to adsorb small molecules, which limits its usability when it comes to drug testing, e.g., in organ-on-a-chip (OoC) systems. Therefore, alternatives to PDMS are in high demand. In this study, we use thermoplastic elastomer (TPE) films thermally bonded to laser-cut poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA) sheets to build up multilayered microfluidic devices with integrated pneumatic micro-pumps. We present a low-cost manufacturing technology based on a conventional CO2 laser cutter for structuring, a spin-coating process for TPE film fabrication, and a thermal bonding process using a pneumatic hot-press. UV treatment with an Excimer lamp prior to bonding drastically improves the bonding process. Optimized bonding parameters were characterized by measuring the burst load upon applying pressure and via profilometer-based measurement of channel deformation. Next, flow and long-term stability of the chip layout were measured using microparticle Image Velocimetry (uPIV). Finally, human endothelial cells were seeded in the microchannels to check biocompatibility and flow-directed cell alignment. The presented device is compatible with a real-time live-cell analysis system.


FachzeitschriftBiosensors : open access journal
PublikationsstatusVeröffentlicht - Mai 2021

Externe IDs

PubMed 34069506


ASJC Scopus Sachgebiete


  • Layer-by-layer manufacturing, Micro-pneumatics, Organ-on-a-chip, PDMS-free, Thermoplastic elastomers