Gene Expression in on-Chip Membrane-Bound Artificial Cells

Ziane Izri, David Garenne, Vincent Noireaux, Yusuke Maeda

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Artificial cells made of molecular components and lipid membrane are emerging platforms to characterize living systems properties. Cell-free transcription-translation (TXTL) offers advantages for the bottom-up synthesis of cellular reactors. Yet, scaling up their design within well-defined geometries remains challenging. We present a microfluidic device hosting TXTL reactions of a reporter gene in thousands of microwells separated from an external buffer by a phospholipid membrane. In the presence of nutrients in the buffer, microreactors are stable beyond 24 h and yield a few mg/mL of proteins. Nutrients in the external solution feed the TXTL reaction at the picoliter scale via passive transport across the phospholipid membrane of each microfluidic well, despite the absence of pores. Replacing nutrients with an inert polymer and fatty acids at an isotonic concentration reduces microreactors efficiency, and a significant fraction yields no protein. This emphasizes the crucial role of the membrane for designing cell-free TXTL microreactors as efficient artificial cells.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1705-1712
Number of pages8
JournalACS Synthetic Biology
Volume8
Issue number8
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 16 2019

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Artificial Cells
Gene expression
Nutrients
Phospholipids
Lab-On-A-Chip Devices
Membranes
Gene Expression
Microfluidics
Food
Buffers
Proteins
Transcription
Membrane Lipids
Reporter Genes
Fatty acids
Polymers
Fatty Acids
Genes
Cell Membrane
Geometry

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology (miscellaneous)

Cite this

Gene Expression in on-Chip Membrane-Bound Artificial Cells. / Izri, Ziane; Garenne, David; Noireaux, Vincent; Maeda, Yusuke.

In: ACS Synthetic Biology, Vol. 8, No. 8, 16.08.2019, p. 1705-1712.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Izri, Ziane ; Garenne, David ; Noireaux, Vincent ; Maeda, Yusuke. / Gene Expression in on-Chip Membrane-Bound Artificial Cells. In: ACS Synthetic Biology. 2019 ; Vol. 8, No. 8. pp. 1705-1712.
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