Custom Microfluidic Devices for TME Modeling

Despite the great efforts in exploring cancer biology and developing anticancer therapies, establishing an efficient in vitro tumor microenvironment (TME), exploring effective models for screening anti-cancer drugs, revealing the nature of cancer, and developing therapeutic methods are still the main challenges for cancer research at this stage. It is difficult to accurately predict the behavior of drugs in the human body, regardless of animal experiments or traditional in vitro experiments such as 2D/3D cell culture systems, and the limitations of the model have hindered the translation of basic research results into clinical applications.

Recreating The TME Using Microfluidic Technology

The emergence of microfluidic technology provides a new technical platform for in vitro TME construction, which can reproduce the key structural and functional characteristics of in vivo tumors (e.g., cancer metastasis cascade, dynamic blood flow, cell-cell and cell-ECM interactions), provide insights into the mechanism of tumor evolution, and enable precise screening of anticancer drugs and development of new strategies for tumor therapy. In addition, microfluidic systems have powerful control elements that enable precise control of multiple microenvironmental factors and the binding of different cell types in vitro. Importantly, microfluidic models require only a small number of cells, making them superior to simple patient biopsy samples.

Microfluidic devices in modeling the interactions between immune cells and tumor cells.Fig. 1 Microfluidic devices in modeling the interactions between immune cells and tumor cells. (Li Y, et al., 2022)

Our Customized TME Model

To help our customers investigate the impact of complex cellular interactions in the TME on response and resistance to cancer therapies, Alfa Cytology is committed to customizing complex and clinically relevant TME models by combining microfluidic technology with 3D culture systems. We control matrix structure, matrix stiffness, cell composition and proportion, flow rate, and other characteristics according to customers' needs to customize the TME model most suitable for their research. Our models can be combined with high-resolution and real-time imaging to explore a variety of preclinical assays in specific organ or disease contexts.

Our customized microfluidic chip has the following characteristics:

Our custom microfluidic chips are helpful in predicting cancer treatment sensitivity for applications and contribute to the advancement of personalized or precision functional medicine strategies. The application of microfluidics allows multiple components in TME to be individually controlled. Based on this feature, we can provide you with customized models for different experimental designs such as:

Product Customization Options

If you are interested in our custom microfluid devices for TME Modeling, please contact us for more details.


  1. Li Y, et al. Microfluidic devices: The application in TME modeling and the potential in immunotherapy optimization. Frontiers in Genetics. 2022, 13: 969723.
  2. Das T, Chakraborty S. Perspective: Flicking with flow: Can microfluidics revolutionize the cancer research? Biomicrofluidics. 2013, 7(1).
  3. Ahn J, et al. Tumor microenvironment on a chip: the progress and future perspective. Bioengineering. 2017, 4(3): 64.


Alfa Cytology is a service provider specializing in tumor microenvironment research.

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