Fabrication of PEG Hydrogel Microwell Arrays for High-Throughput Single Stem Cell Culture and Analysis

  • Stefan A. Kobel
  • Matthias P. LutolfEmail author
Part of the Methods in Molecular Biology book series (MIMB, volume 811)


Microwell arrays are cell culture and imaging platforms to assess cells at a single cell level and in high-throughput. They allow the spatial confinement of single cells in microfabricated cavities on a substrate and thus the continuous long-term observation of single cells and their progeny. The recent development of microwell arrays from soft, biomimetic hydrogels further increases the physiological relevance of these platforms, as it substantially enhances stem cell survival and the efficiency of self-renewal or differentiation. This protocol describes the microfabrication of such hydrogel microwell arrays, as well as the cell handling and imaging.

Key words

Stem cells Single cell analysis Poly(ethylene glycol) PEG Hydrogel Time-lapse microscopy Soft lithography Microcontact printing 



We thank Dr. Samy Gobaa, Katarzyna Mosiewicz and Andrea Negro for valuable discussions.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Laboratory of Stem Cell Bioengineering (LSCB) and Institute of Bioengineering (IBI)Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL)LausanneSwitzerland

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