High-throughput indentational elasticity measurements of hydrogel extracellular matrix substrates

Dexter J. D'Sa, Elena M. De Juan Pardo, Rosalia De Las Rivas Astiz, Shamik Sen, Sanjay Kumar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Much interest surrounds the effect of extracellular matrix (ECM) elasticity on cell behavior. Here we present a rapid method for measuring the elasticity of synthetic ECM substrates based on indentation of the substrate with a ferromagnetic sphere and optical tracking of the resulting deformation. We find that this method yields order-of-magnitude agreement with atomic force microscopy elasticity measurements, but that the degree of this agreement depends strongly on sphere density and gel elasticity. In its regime of greatest accuracy, we envision that this method may be used for high-throughput characterization of ECM substrates in cell biological studies.

Original languageEnglish
Article number063701
JournalApplied Physics Letters
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 27 Aug 2009
Externally publishedYes


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