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A novel device to measure the electrical and mechanical properties of a living cell, at the same time

Researchers at the Center for Nanoscience and Engineering (CeNSE) at IISc, in collaboration with Iowa State University and Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, have developed a novel device that can simultaneously measure the electrical and mechanical properties of a cell.  Using a technique called Electrochemical Impedance Spectroscopy (EIS), they have successfully measured the electrical properties of a cell by passing it through two electrodes while applying an external electric field.  They then calculated the the resistance offered by the cell. Simultaneously, they also measured the time taken by the cell to pass through a mechanical constriction, to determine its mechanical properties. This ability to measure both electrical and mechanical properties of a cell  simultaneously, could lead to a clearer understanding of the functioning of the building blocks of life.