Blockstage use ideas for medical science

During #openflexurecon22 I mentioned that the blockstage could be a great platform for micro manipulation of embryos and other cells. This is what the actual micromanipulator looks like.
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Another use for the blockstage is to construct Tissue Microarrays
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What sort of travel range is used in those? The device for microarray looks to be quite long coarse travel. The micromanipulator above looks to have less travel, and a low magnification camera?

I’ve only seen others using the micromanipulator. It is a combination of the blockstage and the inverted microscope like the OpenFlexure. First, you position the Petri dish containing the cells until you find the one you like to target. The can be done manually by pushing the dish around or using a moving stage. Hence, you may not need the moving mechanism for the Petri dish. Both sides need nano precision to be positioned on the 3 axis and moved around. One side has a micro pipette to provide suction and keep the cell in place and the other a micro injector. A quick search online shows that it costs £9500…each side! plus the cost of the microscope and the computer. Here is a video of the process:

The tissue microarray process is slightly more difficult to explain in words. You have to see how it works. Basically you transfer a small piece of tissue from one donor paraffin block to another recipient block to create this array.


The recipient paraffin block can be anywhere from 15x15mm to 37x24mm. The tissue cores are usually placed between 2-5 mm apart.

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Hey @dgrosen, nice idea! We hosted a student’s project a while ago with pretty much the same idea:
GitHub - openUC2/openCM2_hardware I can ask them how far they went in the end :slight_smile:

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