Cell Culture Technology

Lab for cell culture technology at Fraunhofer EMFT
© Fraunhofer EMFT / Bernd Müller
Lab for cell culture technology at Fraunhofer EMFT

The deployment of cell-based sensors and assays require competences and technologies in biological model systems, measurement technology and data analytics. Most of the sensors in focus of the developements utilize cell culture technologies for cultivating cells and tissue directly on physical signal transducers, thus enabling non-invasive and label-free readout methods. The interface between the cells and the sensor is especially important for the functionality of these systems, thoroughly analyzed for consequent problem-oriented customization.

For the development and deployment of cell-based sensors, the Fraunhofer EMFT site in Regensburg offers technological expertise in

  • Biological model systems and their characterization
  • Developement of electrochemical, piezoelectric and optical sensors for application on cells and tissue
  • Compilation of biological profiles of action

Cultivation of animal cells and micro-organisms

Cell lines, also genetically modified (S1)  Cell lines of various species: human, cow, ape, dog, rat, hamster, mouse 
Established cell cultivation models of various tissues  Kidney, liver, lung, Aorta/blood vessels, skin, connective tissue, large intestine, ovaries, pancreas, breast, brain
3D tissue models  Spheroid (hanging drop / liquid overlay)
Cell culture technologies Class II work benches, cryoconservation, microscopy 


Confocal laser scanning microscope (upright) with 3 laser lines  Documentation of the cell vitality (living/dead -test) as well as the cell structures/components
Epi-fluorescence microscope (invers) with microscope camera, additional transmitted light and phase contrast  Documentation of the cell morphology, cell vitality (living/dead -test) as well as cell components 
Stereomicroscope with a microscope camera  Documentation of sensor layouts/material surfaces 

Thin film techniques / Photolithography

Sputter Coater Metallization/Sputtering of gold. Generation of simple electrode layouts (Gold/ITO) on glas/polymeres for prototypes and small batch production 
UV-exposure unit Exposure
Plasmalizer for argon/air Sterilization, surface modification and functionalization 

Cell cultivation

Plate reader Readout of fluorescence, luminescence and absorbance on multi-wave plates 
Impedance analyzer  Documentation of physiological parameters of cells (non-invasive, real-time): Adhesion and spread,  proliferation, migration/wound healing, introduction of non-membrane-permeable substances via electroporation, cell barrier/permeability, cell death/acute toxicity 
Microgravimetry (QCM) Quantification of the cell adhesion energy (on various materials) as well as the cell stiffness (Zytomechanics) as shrinking/swelling during introduction of the substance
Surface plasmon resonance (SPR) Optical determination of the cell adhesion and cell response to external stimuli based on the dynamic mass distribution in cells 
Microphysiometry Quantification of the oxygen consumption rate (OCR) of cells (cellular respiration), and the extracellular acidification rate  (EAR)
Multi-channel microscope (24 Wells) Documentation of cellphysiological parameters: adhesion, proliferation, migration/wound healing 
Coupled sensor techniques (QCM + Impedancy) Multimodal cell analysis 

These technologies in the area of cell culture technology are available at Fraunhofer EMFT for your application topics. We look forward to hearing from you!

You could also be interested in:


Competence Field: Cell-based Sensor Technology


Service Offering: Biological Test Methods and Cell-based Assays