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Microfluidic cultivation and analysis tools for interaction studies of microbial co-cultures
- Burmeister, Alina, Grünberger, Alexander
- Current opinion in biotechnology 2020 v.62 pp. 106-115
- coculture, engineering, microfluidic technology, physiology
- Microbial consortia are fascinating yet barely understood biological systems with an elusive intrinsic complexity. Studying microbial consortia and the interactions of their members is of major importance for the understanding, engineering and control of synthetic and natural microbial consortia. Microfluidic cultivation and analysis devices are versatile tools for the study of microbial interactions at the single-cell level. While there is a vast amount of literature on microfluidics for the investigation of monocultures only few studies on co-cultures have been conducted in this context. Here we give an overview of different microfluidic single-cell cultivation tools for the analysis of microbial consortia with a focus on their physiology, growth dynamics and cellular interactions. Finally, central challenges and perspectives for the future application of microfluidic tools for microbial consortia investigations will be given.