Key benefits

  • Fully automated – 1-click pipette cleaning with uMp-TSC
  • Large range and fine resolution – ±70 kPa range, 7 Pa resolution
  • High accuracy –  closed-loop control with ±140 Pa absolute accuracy
  • Robust performance – in-built calibration capabilities and temperature compensation
  • Fast switching between user/ATM and regulated pressure
  • Compact – 1-channel desktop and 4 / 8 channel 1U rack variants
  • IO interface for DAQ devices – easy add-on installation
  • Automation ready – short latency PC connection, open-source SDK

Boost patch-clamp recording throughput to next level!

Sensapex has commercialized the automated pipette cleaning technique developed by Dr. Ilya Kolb, Dr. Craig Forest and their colleagues (1), and manufactures related products under exclusive license from GTRC, USA. We are proud to facilitate adoption of this simple but powerful new innovation, which works robustly in real-life and enables automating micropipette techniques!

  • Forming giga seal requires pristine pipette tip -> traditionally pipette is changed after each recording and/or its attempt
  • Automated pipette cleaning enables immediate re-use -> reduced down-time and no loss of other recordings from manual handling related vibrations in multi-patch experiments
  • Thoroughly validated to be safe to cells in original publication by the inventors (1); see also recent publication by Dr. Peng et. al from Dr. Geiger laboratory (2), which demonstrates dramatic increase in throughput in the multi-patch experiments.

  1. Kolb I et. al. Cleaning patch-clamp pipettes for immediate reuse. Sci Rep. 2016 Oct 11;6:35001
  2. Peng Y et al. High-throughput microcircuit analysis of individual human brains through next-generation multineuron patch-clamp. Elife. 2019 Nov 19;8. pii: e48178.

Visit Sensapex Science for further information about the technique!

Pipette cleaning technique

Automated pipette cleaning process takes less than a minute and consist of following steps, which can be executed by the 1-click feature available at the uMp-TSC touch screen unit:

  1. uMp micromanipulator moves the pipette tip to dedicated cleaning well of the uMc pipette cleaning insert, which is filled with Alconox or Tergazyme
  2. uMc automated pressure controller sets negative pressure to the pipette to draw cleaning solution to the tip.
  3. Pressure is automatically changed between the positive and negative values to flush cleaning solution through the tip.
  4. Positive pressure pulse with extended duration is applied to expel all cleaning solution from the pipette with 10x safety factor.
  5. Pipette tip is moved to the dedicated rinsing well of the cleaning insert for further safety.
  6. Pressure is automatically changed between the positive and negative values to cycle rinsing solution through the tip.
  7. Pipette tip is moved accurately back to starting position.

Automated patch clamp pressure control

uMc automated pressure controllers can be also used to optimize and systematically apply pressure values that provide best data yield and quality for patch clamp recordings. 1-click quick buttons are available at the uMp-TSC to configure and set desired values for each step of the whole-cell patch clamp recordings in vitro and in vivo. Please see uM workstations for fully automated patch clamp workflows.

uMc products overview

  • uMp-TSC touch screen unit provides intuitive stand-alone user interface to operate and configure uMc-PPC automated pressure controllers, including 1-click automated pipette cleaning as well as quick buttons for saving and setting specific pressure values.
  • uMc automated pressure controller product line include 1-channel desktop version with optional DAQ interface, as well as 4 and 8 channel rack-mounted product versions.
  • uMc-LQS is optical sensing based accessory, which detects possible fluid in the pressure tubing and prevents it entering uMc-PPC products.
  • uMc-PRF products include high quality pre-regulation and filtering of the pressure supply to meet the uMc-PPC input pressure requirements. VAC version is available, which includes vacuum generation.
  • Standard uMc pipette cleaning insert is designed for Warner PM platform. It is placed on the left and/or right side(s) of the chamber and provides dedicated cleaning and rinsing wells for 4 pipettes (8 pipettes when placed on both sides). It includes reservoirs that passively maintain the steady solution level at the cleaning and rinsing wells during the experiment duration.

Configuration examples

Automated 1-channel pipette cleaning

    • uMc-PPC1 1-channel pressure controller
    • uMc-PRF Pressure pre-regulation & filter unit
    • uMc-SLC Cleaning insert for Warner PM platform

Quad multi-patch with automated pipette cleaning

    • uMc-PPC4 4-channel pressure controller
    • uMc-PRF-VAC Pressure pre-regulation & filter unit with vacuum generation
    • uMc-SLC Cleaning insert for Warner PM platform

Automated multi-patch with eight channels

    • uMc-PPC8 8-channel pressure controller
    • uMc-PRF-VAC pressure pre-regulation & filter unit with vacuum generation
    • uMc-LQS8 8-channel liquid sensor
    • 2 pcs of uMc-SLC Cleaning insert for Warner PM platform

Sensapex products are proprietary and patented (US 9,138,892, US 9,662,783, EP 2 776 215, US 10,427,292; EP 09851052.2, EP15906190.2, US 15/765,608, EP: 15906189.4). Automated patch clamp (US 9,498,293 and US 9,668,804) and pipette cleaning (US 15/232,770 and EP 16836035.2) products are manufactured under licenses from GTRC and MIT, U.S.A.

uMc-PPC1 Pressure controller

Output pressure+70 kPa
Output vacuum-70 kPa
Resolution7 Pa
Accuracy±140 Pa
Input pressure required+80 kPa
Input vacuum required-80 kPa
Analog I/O ControlOptional
Dimensions128 x 204 x 52 mm

See price in webstore

uMc-PPC4/8 Pressure controller

Output pressure+70 kPa
Output vacuum-70 kPa
Resolution7 Pa
Accuracy±140 Pa
Input pressure required+80 kPa
Input vacuum required-80 kPa
Analog I/O ControlIncluded
Dimensions483 x 357 x 44 mm

See price in webstore

uMc-SLQ Optical safety switch

Max channels8
Dimensions483 x 60 x 44 mm

See price in webstore

uMc-PRF Pressure pre-regulator & filter unit

Input pressure required+150 kPa
Input vacuum required- 80 kPa
Output pressure+70 kPa
Output vacuum-70 kPa
Dimensions304 x 467 x 163 mm

See price in webstore

uMc-PRF Pressure pre-regulator & filter unit with vacuum generator

Input pressure required+400 kPa
Input vacuum requiredn/a
Output pressure+70 kPa
Output vacuum-70 kPa
Dimensions304 x 467 x 163 mm

See price in webstore

Multipatch from brain slices

Sensapex micromanipulator system with home-made pressure controller (courtesy of Geiger lab, Charite, Germany)

Automated whole-cell recordings from cultured cells

Sensapex custom built uM workstations for cultured neurons held in 35 mm glass-bottom dish for automated whole cell recordings and fluorescence imaging (courtesy of GENIE project, Janelia, USA).