Label-free neuroblastoma cell separation from hematopoietic progenitor cell products using acoustophoresis - towards cell processing of complex biological samples

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Processing of complex cell preparations such as blood and peripheral blood progenitor cell (PBPC) transplants using label-free technologies is challenging. Transplant-contaminating neuroblastoma cells (NBCs) can contribute to relapse, and we therefore aimed to provide proof-of-principle evidence that label-free acoustophoretic separation can be applied for diagnostic NBC enrichment and removal ("purging") from human blood and PBPC products. Neuroblastoma cells spiked into blood and PBPC preparations served as model systems. Acoustophoresis enabled to enrich NBCs from mononuclear peripheral blood cells and PBPC samples with recovery rates of up to 60-97%. When aiming at high purity, NBC purities of up to 90% were realized, however, compromising recovery. Acoustophoretic purging of PBPC products allowed substantial tumour cell depletion of 1.5-2.3 log. PBPC loss under these conditions was considerable (>43%) but could be decreased to less than 10% while still achieving NBC depletion rates of 60-80%. Proliferation of cells was not affected by acoustic separation. These results provide first evidence that NBCs can be acoustically separated from blood and stem cell preparations with high recovery and purity, thus indicating that acoustophoresis is a promising technology for the development of future label-free, non-contact cell processing of complex cell products.


External organisations
  • Skåne University Hospital
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Cell and Molecular Biology
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)8777
JournalScientific Reports
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2019 Jun 19
Publication categoryResearch