Parallelized microfluidic diatom accumulation assay to test fouling-release coatings

Nolte, K.A. and Schwarze, J. and Beyer, C.D. and Özcan, O. and Rosenhahn, A.

Volume: 13 Pages:
DOI: 10.1116/1.5034090
Published: 2018

Assessing the efficiency of the next generation of protective marine coatings is highly relevant for their optimization. In this paper, a parallelized microfluidic testing device is presented to quantify the accumulation of a model organism (Navicula perminuta) under constant laminar flow. Using automated microscopy in conjunction with image analysis, the adhesion densities on the tested surfaces could be determined after exposure to a flow of suspended algae for 90 min. The optimized protocol for the assay is presented, and the reproducibility of the densities of attached diatoms was verified on four identical surfaces (self-assembled dodecanethiol monolayers). A set of well-characterized self-assembled monolayers with different chemical terminations was used to validate the performance of the assay and its capability to discriminate diatom accumulation on different surface chemistries under dynamic conditions. The observed trends are in good agreement with previously published results obtained in single channel accumulation and detachment assays. To demonstrate the practical relevance of the dynamic experiment, diatom attachment on four technically relevant silicone coatings with different fouling-release properties could clearly be distinguished. © 2018 Author(s).

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