A modular system for the DNA-directed immobilization of antibodies was applied to capture living cells on microstructured DNA surfaces. It is demonstrated in two different set-ups, static incubation and hydrodynamic flow, that this approach is well suited for specific capture and selection of cells from culture medium. The adhered cells show intact morphology and they can be cultivated to grow to dense monolayers, restricted to the lateral dimensions of DNA spots on the surface. Owing to the modularity of surface biofunctionalization, the system can readily be configured to serve as a matrix for adhesion and growth of different cells, as demonstrated by specific binding of human embryonic kidney cells (HEK293) and Hodgkin lymphoma L540cy cells onto patches bearing appropriate recognition moieties inside a microfluidic channel. We therefore anticipate that the systems described here should be useful for fundamental research in cell biology or applications in biomedical diagnostics, drug screening, and nanobiotechnology.