Simple cell chip

Javier Atencia and colleagues at the US National Institute of Standards & Technology have taken a few sheets of plastic, a glass slide and some double-sided sticky tape to quickly and easily construct a lab-on-a-chip device for carrying out cell assays. Their "diffusion-based gradient generator" can be used to rapidly assess how changing concentrations of specific chemicals affect living cells. The microfluidic device could be used to carry out toxicity testing inexpensively on a range of chemicals.