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The electrical properties of single cells provide fundamental insights into their pathological condition and are therefore of immense interest to medical practitioners. Accordingly, this study captures single HeLa cells using a microfluidic device and then measures their impedance properties using a commercial impedance spectroscopy system. The experimental system is modeled by an equivalent electrical circuit and COMSOL simulations are then performed to establish the conductivity, permittivity and impedance of single HeLa cells under various operational frequencies and voltages. At an operational voltage of 0.2 V, the maximum deviation between the experimental and simulation results for the magnitude and phase of the HeLa cell impedance is found to be 9.5% and 4.2%, respectively. In general, both sets of results show that the conductivity and permittivity of single HeLa increase with an increasing operational voltage. Moreover, an increasing frequency is found to increase the conductivity of HeLa cells at all values of the operational voltage, but to reduce the permittivity for operational voltages in the range 0.6~1.0 V.
Date of Conference: 18-20 Dec. 2008