Mapping and manipulating temperature-concentration phase diagrams using microfluidics

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Context

Searching for the correct conditions under which a specific protein crystallizes can be both an expensive and time consuming process, yet is an essential step if any work with the protein is to be done. Recently there was been efforts made towards creating automated microfluidic methods to search phase space for the necessary conditions. The advantages of such screening methods are its low cost, since only small volumes of the protein are needed, along with precise control of the conditions. This paper presents a method developed by the group that searches a two dimensional parameter space (protein concentration and temperature) to create a phase diagram of protein crystallization.

Method