Adhesion of Retinal Cells on Polyelectrolyte Multilayers


Darwin R. Reyesa, Elizabeth Perrucciob, S. Patricia Becerrab, Laurie Locascioc, Michael Gaitana


aDevice Technology Group, Semiconductor Electronics Division, National Institute of Standards and Technology, Gaithersburg, MD

bLaboratory of Retinal Cell and Molecular Biology, National Eye Institute, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD

cThe Molecular Spectrometry and Microfluidic Methods Group, Analytical Chemistry Division, National Institute of Standards and Technology, Gaithersburg, MD


Existing methods for patterning cells in small and specific areas generally require the fabrication of a microcontact stamp, to imprint the adhesive molecules or a micropattern mask, to expose the areas in the substrate where the cells or adhesive proteins will be anchored.  Since these methods employ adhesive proteins the use of non-biological polymers as adhesive elements will avoid the presence of biological material, minimizing the degradation of the bonds linking the cell to the surface.  Polyelectrolyte multilayers (PEMs), which consist of alternating layers of polyanions and polycations adsorbed on a charged surface, are used to alter the functionality of a surface region that has been charged.  The combination of PEMs with a new approach that alters the functionality of polymer surfaces using UV laser to irradiate and consequently charge specific areas, allows the patterning of charged areas of diverse diameters in a very simple and precise fashion.  This work presents the use of poly(diallyldimethylammonium chloride) and polystyrene sulfonic acid to form PEMs film to generate micropatterned areas and its use as adhesion sites for retinal cells for further usage in cell-based assays.