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Publication numberUS3807235 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateApr 30, 1974
Filing dateOct 6, 1972
Priority dateOct 13, 1971
Also published asDE2244968A1
Publication numberUS 3807235 A, US 3807235A, US-A-3807235, US3807235 A, US3807235A
InventorsKamber O, Lefkovits I
Original AssigneeHoffmann La Roche
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Micropipetting apparatus
US 3807235 A
Abstract
Apparatus for withdrawing minute quantities of a liquid medium into a liquid collecting apparatus. The so-obtained liquid medium is then transferred from the liquid collecting apparatus into a vessel containing another medium which interacts with the liquid medium collected to give information about the latter.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

waited States Patent [191 Lefkovits et al.

[ Apr. 30, 1974 MICROPIPETTING APPARATUS [75] Inventors: Ivan Lefkovits, Bettingen; Otto Kamber, Basel, both of Switzerland [73] Assignee: Hoffmann-La Roche Inc., Nutley,

[22] Filed: Oct. 6, 1972 21 Appl. No; 295,646

52 U.S.Cl. 73/425.6 51 Im. Cl B01] 3/02 [58] FieldofSearch ..222/263;73/425,4R,

[ 5 6 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS Guinn 73/4256 3/1969 Wiggins ..73/425.6 3/1971 Lancaster 222/263 Primary ExaminerS. Clement Swisher Attorney, Agent, or Firm--Samuel L. Welt; Bernard S. Leon 5 7] ABSTRACT Apparatus for withdrawing minute quantities of a liquid medium into a liquid collecting apparatus. The soobtained liquid medium is then transferred from the liquid collecting apparatus into a vessel containing another medium which interacts with the liquid medium collected to give information about the latter.

7 Claims, 3 Drawing Figures PATENTEBAPNOIBN 313071235 SHEET 2 UF 2 FIG. 3

MICROPIPETTING APPARATUS DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION The present invention relates to a micropipetting apparatus. More particularly, it relates to a micropipetting apparatus adapted to simultaneously withdraw from a liquid containing vessel, very small samplings of a liquid, which samplings are substantially all of equal volume and are of a very small magnitude, i.e., of the order of a microliter.

Pipetting apparatuses which are capable of simultaneously withdrawing a plurality of samples of liquid to be pipetted are known. Such known apparatuses, however, are generally suitable for withdrawing amounts of liquid in excess of 25 microliters. In many instances, 25 microliters is much more than the amount needed and, thus, more liquid is withdrawn from the liquidcontaining medium than is needed for an intended purpose. Hence, waste of liquid and inefficiency result. I

The disadvantages in utilizing more liquid than is needed for study is particularly apparent in such fields as, for example, research with tissue cultures. In this field, because of the high expenses incurred in obtaining the liquids, amounts in the order of magnitude of a microliterare most preferably utilized for study.

With the general desire for miniaturization, there now exists the need for a pipetting apparatus of simple construction and yet which is suitable for the simultaneouspipetting of a plurality of equal amounts of liquid in the order of magnitude of about a microliter.

This desideratum is achieved by the micropipetting apparatus provided by the present invention which comprises a number of cannulas fastened to a carrier plate and a pump membrane fitted over the carrier plate, the pump membrane being in communication with a suction chamber by means of a perforated plate provided with indentations which are disposed in such a way that they each register with a cannula and determine the volume of the liquid which is to be pipetted.

The micropipetting apparatus provided by the present invention will now be described with reference to the accompanying drawings in which:

FIG. 1 is a sectional view of the cannula plate;

FIG. 2 is a sectional view of a part of a cannula plate;

FIG. 3 is a complete view of the micropipetting apparatus. v

The micropipetting apparatus comprises a cannula plate shown in FIG. 1 made of stainless steel material which consists of a carrier plate 2 having 60 cannulas 1 secured thereto. The cannulas are all of equal dimensions and are disposed on plate 2 in staggered relationship in six rows, each containing 10 cannulas.

Over the carrier plate 2, there is situated a flat pump membrane 3 which is made, for example, of rubber or of any suitable elastic synthetic material. The membrane 3 is supported on a plate 4 having 60 indentations 6. The transverse axis of each indentation 6 and the longitudinal axis of each of the cannulas are disposed along substantially the same line. In communication with each indentation is an opening 7. Opening 7 is disposed between pump membrane 3 and suction chamber 5. The indentations 6 are all of the same volume, i.e., of the order of magnitude of a microliter.

Fastening means is utilized to secure membrane 3 between plates 2 and 4 and section chamber 5 to plates 2 and 4 as shown in FIG. 1. Any suitable securing means of the type shown in FIG. 3 may be utilized as the fastening means.

In order to withdraw samples, the suction chamber 5 is placed under vacuum in a conventional manner, whereby an adjacent portion of the membrane is sucked into each indentation 6. An aliquot of liquid, which corresponds to the volume of an indentation 6 is withdrawn from a liquid containing vessel into each cannula.

In order to deliver the liquid samples to a liquid receiving vessel, it is sufficient to place the suction chamduced in the membrane by the suction.

FIG. 3 is a view of a preferred embodiment of the micropipetting apparatus provided by the present invention. The micropipetting apparatus shown in FIG. 3 can be operated as follows:

The microtitration plate 12, which has 6O recesses filled with culture media, is placed on a carrier plate 13. The cannulas 1 of the cannula plate are then lowered until they are each immersed in the culture media. By means of a foot pedal 14, the suction chamber 5 is placed under vacuum and 60 samplings are drawn into each of the respective cannulas. The microtitration plate 12 is removed and an agar plate or a plate having another nutrient medium thereon, is placed under the cannula plate 10. The vacuum condition which have been imparted to the suction chamber 5 is removed, whereby the liquid in the cannulas is discharged under the influence of gravity onto an agar plate or the like.

'We claim:

1. A micropipetting apparatus for pipetting a liquid comprising a liquid receiving cannula secured to a carrier plate and extending downwardly from the underside thereof, the upper end of said cannula extending to the upperside of the carrier plate, a pump membrane disposed over the upperside of said carrier plate, a second plate provided with an opening overlying the pump membrane, said opening being in registry with said upper end of said cannula, said opening being provided by an indentation and a bore in a second plate in axial alignment and in communication with each other, said indentation extending from the surface of the side of said second plate overlying the pump membrane to a point between the last mentioned surface and the surface of the upperside of the second plate, said bore extending from the surface of the upper. side of said second plate to said point, the diameter of the portion of the bore at the surface of the upper side of the second plate being less than the diameter of the portion of the indentation at the surface of the side of the second plate overlying the pump membrane, means for moving the pump membrane so that a portion thereof is drawn into said indentation in the second plate whereby withdrawal of a predetermined amount of said liquid into said cannula occurs.

2. .A micropipetting apparatus as defined in claim I which comprises a plurality of cannulas and openings whereby a plurality of substantially equal amounts of said liquid is withdrawn from said vessel containing said liquid.

3. A micropipetting apparatus as defined in claim 2 wherein the means for moving the pump membrane is provided by a suction chamber overlying the pump membrane.

4. A micropipetting apparatus as defined in claim 3 wherein the plurality of cannulas are disposed in a staggered relationship.

5. A micropipetting apparatus for pipetting a liquid comprising a liquid receiving cannula secured to a carrier plate and extending downwardly from the underside thereof, the upper end of said cannula extending to the upperside of the carrier plate, a pump membrane disposed over the upperside of said carrier plate, a second plate provided with an opening overlying the pump membrane, said opening being in registry with said upper end of said cannula, means for moving the pump membrane so that a portion thereof is drawn into said opening in the second plate whereby withdrawal of a predetermined amount of said liquid from a vessel containing said liquid into said cannula occurs and wherein the opening in the second plate comprise a large opening in the side of the plate adjacent the pump membrane and a smaller opening extending therefrom, the upper end of said smaller opening being in communication with a suction chamber.

6. A micropipetting apparatus as defined in claim 5 wherein the magnitude of the liquid drawn into the cannula is of the order of a microliter.

7. A micropipetting apparatus as defined in claim 5 wherein the magnitude of the liquid drawn into the cannula is of the order of a microliter.

UNITED STATES PATENT AND TRADEMARK OFFICE CERTIFICATE 0F CORRECTION PATENT NO. 3,807,235 1 DATED April 30, 1974 INVENTOMS) IVAN LEFKOVITS AND OTTO KAMBER It is certified that error appears in the above-identified patent and that said Letters Patent are hereby corrected as shown below: I r

Cover page, after "[21] Appl. No.: 295,646" insert:

[30] Foreign Application Priority Data e October 13, 1971 Switzerland No. 14,907/71 Signed and Sealed this O twenty-second Day Of Jane 1976 [SEAL] Arrest:

RUTH C. MASON C. MARSHALL DANN Arresting Officer (ommissirmer of Pa tents and Trademarks

Patent Citations
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US3568735 *Jun 26, 1968Mar 9, 1971Cooke Eng CoLaboratory microtitration dispensing apparatus
US3572552 *Jul 25, 1969Mar 30, 1971Perry W GuinnDiaphragm dispenser
Referenced by
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Classifications
U.S. Classification73/863.32, 73/864.15, 73/864.11, 422/922, 73/864.24
International ClassificationB01L3/02, G01N35/00
Cooperative ClassificationB01L3/021, G01N2035/00237
European ClassificationB01L3/02C