Link to Pubmed [PMID] – 30314654
Link to DOI – 10.1016/j.bpj.2018.08.048
Biophysical Journal115, 1817–1825, November 6, 2018
The acoustic compressibility of Caenorhabditis elegans is a necessary parameter for further understanding the underlying physics of acoustic manipulation techniques of this widely used model organism in biological sciences. In this work, numerical simulations were combined with experimental trajectory velocimetry of L1 C. elegans larvae to estimate the acoustic compressibility of C. elegans. A method based on bulk acoustic wave acoustophoresis was used for trajectory velocimetry experiments in a microfluidic channel. The model-based data analysis took into account the different sizes and shapes of L1 C. elegans larvae (255 ± 26 μm in length and 15 ± 2 μm in diameter). Moreover, the top and bottom walls of the microfluidic channel were considered in the hydrodynamic drag coefficient calculations, for both the C. elegans and the calibration particles. The hydrodynamic interaction between the specimen and the channel walls was further minimized by acoustically levitating the C. elegans and the particles to the middle of the measurement channel. Our data suggest an acoustic compressibility κCe of 430 TPa-1 with an uncertainty range of ±20 TPa-1 for C. elegans, a much lower value than what was previously reported for adult C. elegans using static methods. Our estimated compressibility is consistent with the relative volume fraction of lipids and proteins that would mainly make up for the body of C. elegans. This work is a departing point for practical engineering and design criteria for integrated acoustofluidic devices for biological applications.