International scientific collaborations:
ANR PRCI project CoDiCell- Controlled dielectrophoresis in microfluidics: application to cell sorting - 2018-2021
Partners: FEMTO-ST (France), ISIR (France), EFS (France), EPFL (Switzerland)
The ambition of the CoDiCell project is to develop innovative methodologies for the trajectory control of large populations of biological cells inside fluidic chips at high speed. It proposes to combine the approaches coming from the microfluidics and the microrobotics communities. Microfluidic chips ensure fast and long range displacements of large population of cells while microrobotics develops precise control of the trajectory of individual cells. The aim of the CoDiCell project is to develop basic scientific knowledge to perform precise trajectory control of individual cells for large scale populations at high speed. This project paves the way to adoptive cell therapy (ACT) for anticancer treatments. This innovative and highly personalized technique is based on the cloning of naturally occurring tumor-reactive lymphocytes. However, in most cases, this treatment must face a major challenge: the identification of these rare natural lymphocytes having a concentration lower than 0.1%, which is beyond the detection level of current techniques. CoDiCell aims at providing this high sorting selectivity.
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National scientific collaborations:
FEDER project Mimedi - Microtechniques for innovative medicines - 2017-2021
Partners: Ilsa (Marchaux), Smaltis (Besançon), Aurea Technology (Besançon), Diaclone (Besançon), BioExigence (Besançon), Med’Inn Pharma (Besançon), EFS (Besançon), FEMTO-ST (Besançon), UMR 1098 (Besançon), FEMTO Engineering (Besançon), CIC-IT (Besançon)
Advanced Therapy Medical Products (ATMPs) recently emerged in order to provide new therapy solutions for patients in therapeutic impasse or for new therapies. These ATMPs rely on the use of “drug cells” exhibiting new physiological functions, biological characteristics or reconstitution properties directly inspired from natural processes occurring in the human organism. However, fabricating these products implies using complex technologies of cell sorting, amplification, gene transduction, division and/or activation. These requirements should be met throughout the fabrication process in specific clean-room like facilities. Due to these fabrication constraints, producing such ATMPs is extremely expensive. For an easier access to ATMPs, a new production concept is required. The MiMédi project aims at proposing such new fabrication concepts (MiMédi: French acronym for “Microtechniques pour les médicaments innovants”). The goal is to associate competences in microfabrication (microfluidics, acoustics, optics, automation, micro and nano technologies) and know-how in tomorrow’s personalized medicine in a freestanding enclosure which can be placed at the patient’s bed. In that framework we will propose highly selective and compact cell sorters.
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ANR project Multiflag - Design and control of multi flagella microswimmers driven by mobile magnets - 2016-2020
Partners: FEMTO-ST (Besançon), ISIR (Paris), ICube (Strasbourg)
The MultiFlag project focuses on the design and the control of new bio-inspired microrobotic systems for future applications in the field of bioengineering. Three scientific objectives are targeted by the project: the design of multiple magnetic flagella micro-robots with optimized propulsion properties in highly viscous liquids, the design of an innovative reconfigurable robotic system to generate rotating magnetic fields in a maximized workspace, and the simultaneous control of the microrobots by the system in reduced environments. Research themes in achieving the main goal are numerous. They cover various topics such as the simulation of locomotion at low Reynolds number, the design of magnetic micro-robots with several flagella, the synthesis of tensegrity mechanisms based robotic systems, or the redundant and simultaneous control of magnetic systems in constrained environments.
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ANR NEMRO: Microrobotic nasal endoscopy by OCT: impact of smell deficiency on neurodegenerative diseases
NEMRO project is part of the challenge of "Health and Well-Being" in its principal axis "Biomedical Innovation". It deals with the relationship between the neurodegenerative diseases and the olfactory deficiency. Several recent clinical studies (often statistical studies) have demonstrated an existing correlation between the loss of smell and the appearance of these pathologies. The olfactory deficit is a reliable precursor sign of a possible neuronal degeneration. Despite this significant advance in the understanding of neurodegenerative disease and related disorders, few ambitious scientific research to understand the origin, evolution and possible means to reverse these diseases by targeted therapies. The reasons for these studies remained at a clinical stage are many and varied. It is particularly difficult to access the olfactory mucosa located at the termination of the nasal walls with a diameter less than 3 mm. In addition to this is the lack of characterization/visualization techniques of the olfactory cells whose individual size is about a hundred micrometers.