Minimally Invasive Intracellular Nano-Injector

Minimally Invasive Intracellular Nano-Injector

This system component automates the penetration and injection*1 of single cells using a nanopipette.
It‘s low invasiveness enables manipulation of live single cells.
The system integrates with multiple manufacturers’ inverted microscopes.*2

Minimally Invasive Single Cell Analysis



  • Low Invasiveness              Glass pipette with tip size of under 100 nm
  • Automated Penetration    Automated cell surface detection and penetration (Z direction movement)
  • Automated Injection         Automated, controller volume injection using electro-osmotic flow
  • High Success Rate             Approx. 95% success rate of injection*3
  • Single-Cell Targeting         Enabled injection of selected cells under microscope observation
  • Rapid Injection                  Capable of injecting one cell every 10 seconds*3

*1 Function to aspirate intracellular substances is under development.
*2 Microscope sold separately.
*3 Experiment by Yokogawa.


Accurate Positioning

Long stroke movements and accurate positioning enabled by combining stepping motors and piezo electric actuator.

Accurate Positioning


Automatic Cell Detection and Penetration

Automatic cell detection and penetration with ion current measurement.

Automatic cell detection and piercing with ion current measurement


Injection Method

Utilizes electro-osmotic flow in the tip of the nanopipette to create a pump effect. The amount of injection is controlled by the duration of the voltage pulse application.


Automated Injection Process

Automatically perform approach, surface detection, injection and  retraction of the tip of the nanopipette.

Injection Process


Application Example

  • Direct injection of substances such as vector and genome editing tools (CRISPR/Cas9) into the nucleus
  • Efficacy/toxicity evaluation of drug candidate molecules
  • Other physical injection of reagents and proteins


Fast Injection with High Success Rate

By automating the steps to penetrate the target cell, an injection speed of approximately 10 seconds has been achieved.
Fluorescence was observed in 208 out of 220 (94.6%) HeLa cells where the fluorescent protein was injected (experiment by Yokogawa)

Below: RFP was injected into the HeLa cells, and sequentially observed with fluorescence.
HeLa cells


Low-Invasive Injection

The extremely small tip diameter of the nanopipette minimizes damage to the target cell.

Below: RFP was injected into the HeLa cells, and sequentially observed with fluorescence.
Low-Invasive Injection


Item   Specification
Basic function Injection By electro-osmotic flow at tip of nanopipette
Actuator Module Coarse movement (Motor Actuator) Stroke:50mm/axis (setting resolution: 0.625μm)
Fine movement (Piezo Actuator) Stroke:100μm/axis (setting resolution: 10nm)
Measurement Module Voltage generation range -10V~+10V(setting resolution:10mV)
Current measurement range −900 to +900 nA (setting current range: ±9 V)
External dimensions and weight Main Controller 260(W) x 99(H) x 280(D) mm, Approx. 2.8kg
Piezoelectric Element Controller 236(W) x 88(H) x 273(D) mm, approx. 4.6kg
Actuator module 270*(W) x 219(H) x 245*(D) mm, Approx. 2.2kg
* In case the X and Y axes move in the direction of the maximum size
Measurement module 85(W) x 30(H) x 43(D) mm, Approx. 0.1kg
Joystick 100(W) x 145(H) x 144(D) mm, Approx. 0.3kg
Safety Guard 130(W) x 230(H) 287(D) mm, Approx. 0.7kg
Power consumption Main Controller + Piezoelectric Controller Max 100VA
Ambient conditions for operation 15~35℃、20~70%RH without condensation


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