Biophysical phenotyping of C. elegans in a microfluidic chip for high-throughput drug screening

Samuel Sofela, Yongxiang Feng, Navajit S. Baban, Christopher J. Stubbs, Yong Ak Song, Wenhui Wang

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Drug discovery requires screening for potential synthetic or natural compounds from a vast number of libraries, and is therefore a lengthy process. To accurately measure drug efficacy while reducing the time, small-scale biological organisms such as Caenorhabditis elegans that closely represent the in vivo pathology of diseases, especially those related to muscle force loss and degeneration, have shown great potential. However, drug screening using C. elegans is mostly based on image-based phenotyping and does not fully take advantage of the locomotory behavior of the worm such as muscle force for biophysical phenotyping. This chapter discusses the design considerations of elastomeric micropillars and their use to quantify the muscle force in free-moving and partially immobilized worms inside microfluidic devices. As applications, the testing of drugs in hyperglycemia and neuromuscular diseases is discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationMicro and Nano Systems for Biophysical Studies of Cells and Small Organisms
Number of pages33
ISBN (Electronic)9780128239902
StatePublished - Jan 1 2021


  • Biophysical phenotyping
  • C. elegans
  • Drug screening
  • Locomotion
  • Mechanobiology
  • Microfluidics
  • Muscle force
  • Neuromuscular diseases

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Economics, Econometrics and Finance(all)
  • General Business, Management and Accounting


Dive into the research topics of 'Biophysical phenotyping of C. elegans in a microfluidic chip for high-throughput drug screening'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this