Instrumentation for cell capacitance measurements: Switching sinusoidal excitations for studying cell membrane transport

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Date of Original Version



This project aims at the design of new instrumentation techniques for studying the electrical properties of the cell as a means of better understanding the cellular transport processes. The approach is to integrate the concept of a lock-in amplifier on a single-electrode platform. Switching sinusoidal excitations can be used to assess small but measurable changes of cell capacitance, which can be used to make inferences about cell surface area changes during the transport processes. In this study, a cell membrane model circuit has been simulated in software. In addition, a proof-of-concept instrumentation has also been implemented with an embedded system. The results have shown the feasibility of obtaining accurate real-time measurements of the cell capacitance by time-multiplexing the sinusoidal excitation and the voltage measurement via a single patch-clamp electrode.

Publication Title

Proceedings of the IEEE Annual Northeast Bioengineering Conference, NEBEC