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Naming of the ECIS Arrays

You may have wondered what the various numbers and letters refer to when naming the different ECIS electrode arrays. For example, what is the difference between the 8W10E and the 8W10E+? Why does the number 10 occur in each name in spite of that fact that there are 10 active electrodes in the 8W10E array but 40 small electrodes in the 8W10E+?
Let me try to explain the system for naming.
Well number
The first part of the naming is obvious - 8W is for eight wells and 96W for the standard 96 well platform. This is followed by a description of the electrodes in each well.
Electrode configuration
Let's begin with the 8W1E array. This has a single 250 micrometer diameter electrode (5 x10-4 cm2) with a large counter electrode completing the circuit. The area of counter electrode is several hundred times that of the small electrode and essentially is not part of the measurement (large electrodes having very small impedance values). When one does an electrode check (4000 Hz) with the 8W1E array without cells, we measure the capacitance of this small electrode - about 6nF. The capacitance scales with the area, so the 8W10E array with 10 small electrodes on a gold pad (again with a large counter electrode) will have 10 times the capacitance or about 60 nF.
Now to the more complicated part - consider the 10E+ arrays where we have 20 small electrodes on the same gold pad and another 20 small electrodes on another pad (instead of a large counter electrode). Each group of 20 has a combined capacitance of 20 x 6 nF or about 120 nF, but these two groups of electrodes are connected in series through the tissue culture medium. When two identical capacitors are connected in series, their net capacitance is only half that of the single capacitor. So the 10E+ with its total of 40 small electrodes will have the same capacitance as the standard 10E array - namely 60 nF (1/2 of 120 nF). That is the key, the number before the E or idf (inter-digitated fingers) is reporting the expected capacitance that you should measure during an electrode check based on 6 nF for the 1E. Just multiply the number in the array name by 6 nF and that is the expected capacitance of the open electrode measured at 4000 Hz.
So with that background, hopefully you see a 96W10idf has 96 wells and should give an open capacitance of 60nF, the 96W1E+ should give about 6nF and the 96W20idf about 120nF.
Remember, if you have open electrodes with less that the expected capacitance they may require treatment with cysteine or electrode stabilization. (see the Oct 2014 Tip of the Month for more information) The ECIS Connection Archives 
ECIS Application Webinar Series

ECIS application webinars review the topics listed below in 20 to 30 minute, web-based, interactive seminars presented by Applied BioPhysics president and co-founder, Dr. Charles Keese.

All webinars are held at 11:00 am EST. To register for a webinar, please go to: and scroll to the webinar date of interest.  
Automated Cell Migration - February 2, 2016
Barrier Function Assays - February 16, 2016
Real-time Electroporation and Monitoring - March 1, 2016
Cell Attachment and Spreading Measurements - March 15, 2016
Signal Transduction Assays - April 5, 2016
Toxicology with ECIS - April 19, 2016
Professor Chu Ming Lo of Yang Ming University of Taiwan leading a session on ECIS Theory during a customer training course at Shanghai Technical University, January 12 and 13, 2016
The ECIS training course was given in cooperation between Dakewe and Sunpoint and allowed for ECIS training in Chinese. ECIS training courses have taken place in Troy, NY, Munich, Germany, Taipei, Taiwan and most recently Shanghai, China. For inquiries as to the next ECIS training course please contact Applied BioPhysics or the distributor nearest you.

Latest ECIS Software   

The latest version of the software is v1.2.215 available from:
Software Tip:

If you have a graph that you like, but wish to extract the displayed data for analysis or plotting in a different program, go to File | Export Data | Graph Data. This will produce a CSV file with the Time and Value for each well. There is also a prompt for whether the Comments should also be appended. This can be useful when applying normalization or other data processing in ECIS and not having to repeat the calculations in Excel. Note that the exported graph data cannot be read back into ECIS for display.

Tradeshows & Events 
SOT Annual Meeting
March 13 - 17, 2016
New Orleans, LA
Experimental Biology
April 2 - 6, 2016
San Diego, CA
AACR Annual Meeting
April 17 - 20, 2016
New Orleans, LA
ATS 2016
May 13 - 18, 2016
San Francisco, CA

Blood Brain Barrier Conference
June 15 - 17, 2016
Westin Waterfront Hotel
Boston, MA
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ECIS Humor

Need a good laugh? Visit the ECIS Cartoons page of our website to view cartoons by Catherine, our in-house cartoonist, to start your day with a smile.

Are you the creative type? Submit one of your own cartoons; if we post it on our website we will send you a free array!