CellStruder v1

by ravisheth, published

CellStruder v1 by ravisheth Jun 26, 2013


CellStruder is a 20mL syringe extruder powered by a NEMA stepper motor, capable of of precise liquid extrusion at the microliter level. Originally developed in Jeff Tabor's lab at Rice University, this device is currently being used for cell printing, enabling research in synthetic biology, biological pattern formation and engineering of cellular logic. An example print of E. coli cells expressing green fluorescent protein is shown above as well as microscopy of printed cells.

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  • Printed:
    1x Motor Plate
    1x Back Plate
    2x Side Plate
    1x Chassis
    1x Needle Holder (note, must be printed with supports)

Sourced Parts:
1x 8mm threaded rod (100mm length)
1x 8mm linear bearing
1x 8mm linear rod (>100mm length)
10x M3x10mm screws
1x NEMA 17 Motor
1x 5mm to 8mm coupler
1x 8mm Hex Nut

Tubing width can be variable:
1x Male Luer Adapter (1/16")
1x Female Luer Adapter (1/16")
1m 1/16" Silicon Tubing
Luer syringe tips (>20 gauge recommended for precision applications)

Uses 20mL BD syringes


  • Print all parts & obtain all BOM materias
    Screw NEMA motor to motor plate with 4 screws
    Attach coupler and 8mm threaded rod to motor
    Screw side rails to motor plate
    Tap 8mm linear bearing into chassis
    Screw hex nut onto threaded rod and fit chassis into threaded rod
    Back plate will snap in
    Slide in 8mm linear rod to hold assembly together
    Place syringe and hold in place with 2x screws


  • This printing apparatus can be used for printing of any liquid or viscous gel. This device was developed in the Tabor Lab at Rice University for printing E. coli in defined patterns, for synthetic biology research in pattern formation and engineering cellular logic. An example print of E. Coli cells expressing green fluorescent protein is shown in a 100x15mm petri dish with the text "NSF EFRI", the grant this research is supported by. Fluorescence microscopy is shown of the entire printed "filament" as well as higher resolution of the printed cells boundary.

Please contact [email protected] with any questions. Thanks!