Recent progress in high-throughput droplet screening and sorting for bioanalysis

Guoyun Sun, Lisha Qu, Fidelis Azi, Yanfeng Liu, Jianghua Li, Xueqin Lv, Guocheng Du, Jian Chen, Chia-Hung Chen*, Long Liu*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Owing to its ability to isolate single cells and perform high-throughput sorting, droplet sorting has been widely applied in several research fields. Compared with flow cytometry, droplet allows the encapsulation of single cells for cell secretion or lysate analysis. With the rapid development of this technology in the past decade, various droplet sorting devices with high throughput and accuracy have been developed. A droplet sorter with the highest sorting throughput of 30,000 droplets per second was developed in 2015. Since then, increased attention has been paid to expanding the possibilities of droplet sorting technology and strengthening its advantages over flow cytometry. This review aimed to summarize the recent progress in droplet sorting technology from the perspectives of device design, detection signal, actuating force, and applications. Technical details for improving droplet sorting through various approaches are introduced and discussed. Finally, we discuss the current limitations of droplet sorting for single-cell studies along with the existing gap between the laboratory and industry and provide our insights for future development of droplet sorters.
Original languageEnglish
JournalBiosensors and Bioelectronics
StatePublished - 1 Apr 2023


  • Droplet sorting
  • Microfluidic device design
  • Droplet detecting
  • Droplet actuating
  • Synthetic biology


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