Microfluidic-Based Beta-Cell Functional Analysis Facility

The Microfluidic-based beta-cell functional analysis facility is located in the Department of Surgery, at the University of Virginia (UVA) and is supported by the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation International (JDRF).

This functional analysis facility

  • The overall purpose is to assist the field of diabetes research in moving forward with therapeutic strategies for beta-cell replacement and beta-cell regeneration to cure Type I diabetes.
  • The facility provides: Analysis and characterization services for emerging islet cell derivatives including hESCs/hiPSCs, and microencapsulated islets/hESCs/hiPSCs.
  • The facility provides: Screening of potential pharmaceutical agents for diabetes treatment.
  • The analysis of hESCs/hiPSCs islet cell derivatives become available to the JDRF researchers upon an approval by JDRF.
  • All services provided by the Facility will be available to diabetes researchers who may not have such technology or access, based on pay-for-service.​
  • Additionally, we are also able to service those who are working on islet or beta-cell related research.


Islet cell derivatives are analyzed to answer the following basic questions

  1. Compared to human islets, do the biologics have similar physiological response profiles in the presence of glucose or other secretagogues?
  2. Physiologically, what are the functional similarities and/or dissimilarities of the biologics to human islets?
  3. Does the biologics have normal or altered insulin stimulator-secretion coupling factors and what, if any, is the impact of pathophysiological changes on insulin secretion?
  4. How does microencapsulation or hypoxia impact the function and survival of microencapsulated islet cells?

Use the Service Request Form (PDF) to initiate services. Or, contact the Analysis Facility directly.

More information about the analysis facility

Analysis Facility Contacts

UVA Islet Microfluidic Laboratory
Department of Surgery

The University of Virginia
Carter Harrison Bldg (MR6) Rm B711
345 Crispell Dr.
Charlottesville, VA 22908