Micro Strain Device for Mechanically Aligned Collagen

The Micro Strain device is an assembly of 3D printed and commercial parts that is designed to fit on the stage of an inverted microscope. It is used to mechanically strain collagen gels to allow for collagen fiber alignment. This can be useful for mechanical testing of collagen and also to study the mechanism of disease spreading and how collagen alignment affects it (maybe reference the paper here).

It works by using a micrometer attached to arm (not shown) to move the arm slowly. The pins attached to the movable and stationary arms make contact with a collagen gel and stretch the collagen when moved apart. The center hole is made to accept a glass-bottom dish, so imaging of the strained collagen can be conducted.

Biophys J. 2014 Dec 2;107(11):2546-58. doi: 10.1016/j.bpj.2014.10.035. Epub 2014 Dec 2. PubMed