Michael L Shuler

Cornell University, Ithaca, New York, United States

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Publications (301)939.99 Total impact

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Transepithelial/transendothelial electrical resistance (TEER) is a widely accepted quantitative technique to measure the integrity of tight junction dynamics in cell culture models of endothelial and epithelial monolayers. TEER values are strong indicators of the integrity of the cellular barriers before they are evaluated for transport of drugs or chemicals. TEER measurements can be performed in real time without cell damage and generally are based on measuring ohmic resistance or measuring impedance across a wide spectrum of frequencies. The measurements for various cell types have been reported with commercially available measurement systems and also with custom-built microfluidic implementations. Some of the barrier models that have been widely characterized using TEER include the blood-brain barrier (BBB), gastrointestinal (GI) tract, and pulmonary models. Variations in these values can arise due to factors such as temperature, medium formulation, and passage number of cells. The aim of this article is to review the different TEER measurement techniques and analyze their strengths and weaknesses, determine the significance of TEER in drug toxicity studies, examine the various in vitro models and microfluidic organs-on-chips implementations using TEER measurements in some widely studied barrier models (BBB, GI tract, and pulmonary), and discuss the various factors that can affect TEER measurements. © 2015 Society for Laboratory Automation and Screening.
    Journal of laboratory automation. 01/2015;
  • Michael L Shuler, James J Hickman
    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 09/2014; · 9.81 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The use of nanoparticles in medical applications is highly anticipated, and at the same time little is known about how these nanoparticles affect human tissues. Here we have simulated the oral uptake of 50 nm carboxylated polystyrene nanoparticles with a microscale body-on-a-chip system (also referred to as multi-tissue microphysiological system or micro Cell Culture Analog). Using the 'GI tract-liver-other tissues' system allowed us to observe compounding effects and detect liver tissue injury at lower nanoparticle concentrations than was expected from experiments with single tissues. To construct this system, we combined in vitro models of the human intestinal epithelium, represented by a co-culture of enterocytes (Caco-2) and mucin-producing cells (TH29-MTX), and the liver, represented by HepG2/C3A cells, within one microfluidic device. The device also contained chambers that together represented the liquid portions of all other organs of the human body. Measuring the transport of 50 nm carboxylated polystyrene nanoparticles across the Caco-2/HT29-MTX co-culture, we found that this multi-cell layer presents an effective barrier to 90.5 ± 2.9% of the nanoparticles. Further, our simulation suggests that a larger fraction of the 9.5 ± 2.9% nanoparticles that travelled across the Caco-2/HT29-MTX cell layer were not large nanoparticle aggregates, but primarily single nanoparticles and small aggregates. After crossing the GI tract epithelium, nanoparticles that were administered in high doses estimated in terms of possible daily human consumption (240 and 480 × 10(11) nanoparticles mL(-1)) induced the release of aspartate aminotransferase (AST), an intracellular enzyme of the liver that indicates liver cell injury. Our results indicate that body-on-a-chip devices are highly relevant in vitro models for evaluating nanoparticle interactions with human tissues.
    Lab on a Chip 06/2014; · 5.70 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The continued development of in vitro systems that accurately emulate human response to drugs or chemical agents will impact drug development, our understanding of chemical toxicity, and enhance our ability to respond to threats from chemical or biological agents. A promising technology is to build microscale replicas of humans that capture essential elements of physiology, pharmacology, and/or toxicology (microphysiological systems). Here, we review progress on systems for microscale models of mammalian systems that include two or more integrated cellular components. These systems are described as a "body-on-a-chip", and utilize the concept of physiologically-based pharmacokinetic (PBPK) modeling in the design. These microscale systems can also be used as model systems to predict whole-body responses to drugs as well as study the mechanism of action of drugs using PBPK analysis. In this review, we provide examples of various approaches to construct such systems with a focus on their physiological usefulness and various approaches to measure responses (e.g. chemical, electrical, or mechanical force and cellular viability and morphology). While the goal is to predict human response, other mammalian cell types can be utilized with the same principle to predict animal response. These systems will be evaluated on their potential to be physiologically accurate, to provide effective and efficient platform for analytics with accessibility to a wide range of users, for ease of incorporation of analytics, functional for weeks to months, and the ability to replicate previously observed human responses.
    Experimental Biology and Medicine 06/2014; · 2.23 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Multi-organ microdevices can mimic tissue-tissue interactions that occur as a result of metabolite travel from one tissue to other tissues in vitro. These systems are capable of simulating human metabolism, including the conversion of a pro-drug to its effective metabolite as well as its subsequent therapeutic actions and toxic side effects. Since tissue-tissue interactions in the human body can play a significant role in determining the success of new pharmaceuticals, the development and use of multi-organ microdevices presents an opportunity to improve the drug development process. The goals are to predict potential toxic side effects with higher accuracy before a drug enters the expensive phase of clinical trials as well as to estimate efficacy and dose response. Multi-organ microdevices also have the potential to aid in the development of new therapeutic strategies by providing a platform for testing in the context of human metabolism (as opposed to animal models). Further, when operated with human biopsy samples, the devices could be a gateway for the development of individualized medicine. Here we review studies in which multi-organ microdevices have been developed and used in a ways that demonstrate how the devices' capabilities can present unique opportunities for the study of drug action. We also discuss the challenges that are inherent in the development of multi-organ microdevices. Among these are how to design the devices, and how to create devices that mimic the human metabolism with high authenticity. Since single organ devices are testing platforms for tissues that can later be combined with other tissues within multi-organ devices, we will also mention single organ devices where appropriate in the discussion.
    Advanced drug delivery reviews 01/2014; · 11.96 Impact Factor
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    Dataset: 1579 ftp
    Beum Jun Kim, Jinpian Diao, Michael L Shuler
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    ABSTRACT: While in vitro cell based systems have been an invaluable tool in biology, they often suffer from a lack of physiological relevance. The discrepancy between the in vitro and in vivo systems has been a bottleneck in drug development process and biological sciences. The recent progress in microtechnology has enabled manipulation of cellular environment at a physiologically relevant length scale, which has led to the development of novel in vitro organ systems, often termed 'organ-on-a-chip' systems. By mimicking the cellular environment of in vivo tissues, various organ-on-a-chip systems have been reported to reproduce target organ functions better than conventional in vitro model systems. Ultimately, these organ-on-a-chip systems will converge into multi-organ 'body-on-a-chip' systems composed of functional tissues that reproduce the dynamics of the whole-body response. Such microscale in vitro systems will open up new possibilities in medical science and in the pharmaceutical industry.
    Lab on a Chip 02/2013; · 5.70 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: A multiorgan, functional, human in vitro assay system or 'Body-on-a-Chip' would be of tremendous benefit to the drug discovery and toxicology industries, as well as providing a more biologically accurate model for the study of disease as well as applied and basic biological research. Here, we describe the advances our team has made towards this goal, as well as the most pertinent issues facing further development of these systems. Description is given of individual organ models with appropriate cellular functionality, and our efforts to produce human iterations of each using primary and stem cell sources for eventual incorporation into this system. Advancement of the 'Body-on-a-Chip' field is predicated on the availability of abundant sources of human cells, capable of full differentiation and maturation to adult phenotypes, for which researchers are largely dependent on stem cells. Although this level of maturation is not yet achievable in all cell types, the work of our group highlights the high level of functionality that can be achieved using current technology, for a wide variety of cell types. As availability of functional human cell types for in vitro culture increases, the potential to produce a multiorgan in vitro system capable of accurately reproducing acute and chronic human responses to chemical and pathological challenge in real time will also increase.
    Stem Cell Research & Therapy 01/2013; 4 Suppl 1:S9. · 4.63 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We describe a novel fabrication method that creates microporous, polymeric membranes that are either flat or contain controllable 3-dimensional shapes that, when populated with Caco-2 cells, mimic key aspects of the intestinal epithelium such as intestinal villi and tight junctions. The developed membranes can be integrated with microfluidic, multi-organ cell culture systems, providing access to both sides, apical and basolateral, of the 3D epithelial cell culture. Partial exposure of photoresist (SU-8) spun on silicon substrates creates flat membranes with micrometer-sized pores (0.5-4.0 μm) that-supported by posts-span across 50 μm deep microfluidic chambers that are 8 mm wide and 10 long. To create three-dimensional shapes the membranes were air dried over silicon pillars with aspect ratios of up to 4:1. Space that provides access to the underside of the shaped membranes can be created by isotropically etching the sacrificial silicon pillars with xenon difluoride. Depending on the size of the supporting posts and the pore sizes the overall porosity of the membranes ranged from 4.4 % to 25.3 %. The microfabricated membranes can be used for integrating barrier tissues such as the gastrointestinal tract epithelium, the lung epithelium, or other barrier tissues with multi-organ "body-on-a-chip" devices.
    Biomedical Microdevices 07/2012; 14(5):895-906. · 2.72 Impact Factor
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    Michael L Shuler, Jong Hwan Sung
    Annals of Biomedical Engineering 05/2012; 40(6):1209-10. · 3.23 Impact Factor
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    Beum Jun Kim, Jinpian Diao, Michael L Shuler
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    ABSTRACT: Animal cells have been used extensively in therapeutic protein production. The growth of animal cells and the expression of therapeutic proteins are highly dependent on the culturing environments. A large number of experimental permutations need to be explored to identify the optimal culturing conditions. Miniaturized bioreactors are well suited for such tasks as they offer high-throughput parallel operation and reduce cost of reagents. They can also be automated and be coupled to downstream analytical units for online measurements of culture products. This review summarizes the current status of miniaturized bioreactors for animal cell cultivation based on the design categories: microtiter plates, flasks, stirred tank reactors, novel designs with active mixing, and microfluidic cell culture devices. We compare cell density and product titer, for batch or fed-batch modes for each system. Monitoring/controlling devices for engineering parameters such as pH, dissolved oxygen, and dissolved carbon dioxide, which could be applied to such systems, are summarized. Finally, mini-scale tools for process performance evaluation for animal cell cultures are discussed: total cell density, cell viability, product titer and quality, substrates, and metabolites profiles.
    Biotechnology Progress 04/2012; 28(3):595-607. · 1.88 Impact Factor
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    Michael L Shuler
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    ABSTRACT: We seek to construct physical and mathematical models of life. Such models allow us to test our understanding of how living systems function and how they respond to human imposed stimuli. One system is a genomically and chemically complete model of a minimal cell. This cell is a hypothetical bacterium with the fewest number of genes possible. Such a minimal cell provides a platform to ask about the essential features of a living cell and forms a platform to investigate "synthetic biology." A second system is "Body-on-a-Chip" which is a microfabricated microfluidic system with cells or tissue constructs representing various organs in the body. It can be constructed from human or animal cells and used in drug discovery development. That model is a physical representation of a physiologically based pharmacokinetic model. Both the computer and the physical models provide insight into the underlying biology and provide new tools to make use of that understanding to provide benefits to society.
    Annals of Biomedical Engineering 04/2012; 40(7):1399-407. · 3.23 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Commercially available permeable supports with microporous membranes have led to significant improvements in the culture of polarized cells because they permit them to feed basolaterally and thus carry out metabolism in a more in vivo-like setting. The porous nature of these membranes enables permeability measurements of drugs or biomolecules across the cellular barrier. However, current porous membranes have a high flow resistance due to great thickness (20-40 μm), low porosity, and a wide pore size distribution with tortuous diffusion paths, which make them low-throughput for permeability studies. Here we describe an alternate platform that is more flexible, allows for more control over physical parameters of the membranes, and is high-throughput. This study reports on the synthesis, nanofabrication, and surface characterization of a 3-μm-thick transparent membrane based on poly(4-hydroxy styrene) (PHOST). The membranes are nanofabricated using electron beam lithography and deep ion plasma etching to achieve an organized array of straight pores from 50 to 800 nm in diameter, with at least 23 times less flow resistance. It also shows for the first time the potential utility of PHOST as a cell culture substrate without cytotoxicity, and suitability for nanofabrication processes due to temperature stability.
    Tissue Engineering Part C Methods 03/2012; 18(9):667-76. · 4.64 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Metarhizium acridum, an entomopathogenic fungus, has been commercialized and used successfully for biocontrol of grasshopper pests in Africa and Australia. Its conidia produce two novel 17-membered macrocycles, metacridamides A and B, which consist of a Phe unit condensed with a nonaketide. Planar structures were elucidated by a combination of mass spectrometric and NMR techniques. Following hydrolysis of 1, chiral amino acid analysis assigned the L-configuration to the Phe unit. A crystal structure established the absolute configuration of the eight remaining stereogenic centers in 1. Metacridamide A showed cytotoxicity to three cancer lines with IC₅₀'s of 6.2, 11.0, and 10.8 μM against Caco-2 (epithelial colorectal adenocarcinoma), MCF-7 (breast cancer), and HepG2/C3A (hepatoma) cell lines, respectively. In addition, metacridamide B had an IC₅₀ of 18.2 μM against HepG2/C3A, although it was inactive at 100 μM against Caco-2 and MCF-7. Neither analogue showed antimicrobial, phytotoxic, or insecticidal activity.
    Journal of Natural Products 02/2012; 75(2):175-80. · 3.95 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The use of engineered nanoparticles in food and pharmaceuticals is expected to increase, but the impact of chronic oral exposure to nanoparticles on human health remains unknown. Here, we show that chronic and acute oral exposure to polystyrene nanoparticles can influence iron uptake and iron transport in an in vitro model of the intestinal epithelium and an in vivo chicken intestinal loop model. Intestinal cells that are exposed to high doses of nanoparticles showed increased iron transport due to nanoparticle disruption of the cell membrane. Chickens acutely exposed to carboxylated particles (50 nm in diameter) had a lower iron absorption than unexposed or chronically exposed birds. Chronic exposure caused remodelling of the intestinal villi, which increased the surface area available for iron absorption. The agreement between the in vitro and in vivo results suggests that our in vitro intestinal epithelium model is potentially useful for toxicology studies.
    Nature Nanotechnology 02/2012; 7(4):264-71. · 31.17 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Microreactors experience significant deviations from plug flow due to the no-slip boundary condition at the walls of the chamber. The development of stagnation zones leads to widening of the residence time distribution at the outlet of the reactor. A hybrid design optimization process that combines modeling and experiments has been utilized to minimize the width of the residence time distribution in a microreactor. The process was used to optimize the design of a microfluidic system for an in vitro model of the lung alveolus. Circular chambers to accommodate commercial membrane supported cell constructs are a particularly challenging geometry in which to achieve a uniform residence time distribution. Iterative computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations were performed to optimize the microfluidic structures for two different types of chambers. The residence time distributions of the optimized chambers were significantly narrower than those of non-optimized chambers, indicating that the final chambers better approximate plug flow. Qualitative and quantitative visualization experiments with dye indicators demonstrated that the CFD results accurately predicted the residence time distributions within the bioreactors. The results demonstrate that such a hybrid optimization process can be used to design microreactors that approximate plug flow for in vitro tissue engineered systems. This technique has broad application for optimization of microfluidic body-on-a-chip systems for drug and toxin studies.
    Annals of Biomedical Engineering 01/2012; 40(6):1255-67. · 3.23 Impact Factor
  • Jong Hwan Sung, Michael L Shuler
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    ABSTRACT: Microtechnology provides a new approach for reproducing the in vivo environment in vitro. Mimicking the microenvironment of the natural tissues allows cultured cells to behave in a more authentic manner, and gives researchers more realistic platforms to study biological systems. In this review article, we discuss the physiochemical aspects of in vivo cellular microenvironment, and relevant technologies that can be used to mimic those aspects. Secondly we identify the core methods used in microtechnology for biomedical applications. Finally we examine the recent application areas of microtechnology, with a focus on reproducing the functions of specific organs, or whole-body response such as homeostasis or metabolism-dependent toxicity of drugs. These new technologies enable researchers to ask and answer questions in a manner that has not been possible with conventional, macroscale technologies.
    Annals of Biomedical Engineering 01/2012; 40(6):1289-300. · 3.23 Impact Factor
  • Michael L Shuler, Patricia Foley, Jordan Atlas
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    ABSTRACT: One important aim of synthetic biology is to develop a self-replicating biological system capable of performing useful tasks. A mathematical model of a synthetic organism would greatly enhance its value by providing a platform in which proposed modifications to the system could be rapidly prototyped and tested. Such a platform would allow the explicit connection of genomic sequence information to physiological predictions. As an initial step toward this aim, a minimal cell model (MCM) has been formulated. The MCM is defined as a model of a hypothetical cell with the minimum number of genes necessary to grow and divide in an optimally supportive culture environment. It is chemically detailed in terms of genes and gene products, as well as physiologically complete in terms of bacterial cell processes (e.g., DNA replication and cell division). A mathematical framework originally developed for modeling Escherichia coli has been used to build the platform MCM. A MCM with 241 product-coding genes (those which produce protein or stable RNA products) is presented. This gene set is genomically complete in that it codes for all the functions that a minimal chemoheterotrophic bacterium would require for sustained growth and division. With this model, the hypotheses behind a minimal gene set can be tested using a chemically detailed, dynamic, whole-cell modeling approach. Furthermore, the MCM can simulate the behavior of a whole cell that depends on the cell's (1) metabolic rates and chemical state, (2) genome in terms of expression of various genes, (3) environment both in terms of direct nutrient starvation and competitive inhibition leading to starvation, and (4) genomic sequence in terms of the chromosomal locations of genes.
    Methods in molecular biology (Clifton, N.J.) 01/2012; 881:573-610. · 1.29 Impact Factor
  • Hui Xu, Jun Wu, Chih-Chang Chu, Michael L Shuler
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    ABSTRACT: Microscale cell culture devices with two or more cell types, such as the micro cell culture analog (microCCA), are promising devices to predict mammalian response to toxic drug and chemical exposure. A polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) version of such microfluidic devices has been challenging to construct due to the difficulty of patterning multi cell types directly into designated individual cell culture chambers in an oxygen plasma bonded PDMS device. Approaches with micro-valves for flow control are complex, expensive and inconvenient to use. In this study, an alternative approach using polyethylene glycol diacrylate (PEG-DA) for spatially controlled multi-cell type patterning inside a bonded microCCA device is described. We constructed a three-cell type PDMS microCCA following a human physiologically based pharmacokinetic (PBPK) modeling, and applied continuous cell culture medium recirculation within the device as a blood surrogate. A fluorescence microscope based direct pattern writing method was used to form cell/hydrogel microstructures with higher cell viability than the traditional UV lamp based method. The positive effect of mixed molecular weight PDG-DA on hydrogel-encapsulated cell membrane integrity was also studied. This prototype PDMS microCCA device was then tested with Triton X-100 as a model toxicant. The combination of hydrogel photo-patterning and the microfluidic cell culture platform enables the fabrication of simple and low cost multi-cell type biosensors for drug development, toxicity study and clinical diagnosis.
    Biomedical Microdevices 12/2011; 14(2):409-18. · 2.72 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: A routine laboratory exercise for an undergraduate electrical engineering student is to build a simple electronic filter circuit and determine its frequency and transient response. During the exercise, the student exposes the circuit to a range of electrical signals and captures the voltage and current characteristics. The relationship between what the circuit is exposed to and how it responds allows for developing a transfer function that provides insight into how the circuit operates.
    IEEE Pulse 11/2011; 2(6):51-9. · 0.66 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

7k Citations
939.99 Total Impact Points


  • 1979–2014
    • Cornell University
      • • Department of Biomedical Engineering
      • • Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering
      • • Department of Entomology
      • • Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology
      • • Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
      • • Department of Microbiology and Immunology
      Ithaca, New York, United States
  • 2012
    • Binghamton University
      • Department of Bioengineering
      Binghamton, NY, United States
  • 2011
    • Wadsworth Center, NYS Department of Health
      Albany, New York, United States
  • 2010
    • Yonsei University
      • Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering
      Seoul, Seoul, South Korea
  • 2003–2010
    • Seoul National University
      • • School of Computer Science and Engineering
      • • School of Chemical and Biological Engineering
      Seoul, Seoul, South Korea
    • University of Massachusetts Amherst
      • Department of Chemical Engineering
      Amherst Center, MA, United States
  • 2008
    • Weill Cornell Medical College
      • Department of Public Health
      New York City, New York, United States
  • 2007
    • University of Maryland, Baltimore County
      Baltimore, Maryland, United States
  • 2004
    • The Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research USA
      New York City, New York, United States
  • 2002
    • California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo
      • Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering
      San Luis Obispo, CA, United States
  • 1993–1998
    • Thompson Institute
      New York City, New York, United States
  • 1995
    • The Scripps Research Institute
      La Jolla, California, United States
  • 1989
    • Ithaca College
      Ithaca, New York, United States