An artificial cell membrane that is composed of bilayer lipid membranes (BLMs) with transmembrane proteins incorporated within them represents a well-defined system for the analysis of membrane proteins, especially ion channel proteins that are major targets for drug design. Because the BLM system has a high compatibility with recently developed cell-free expression systems, it has attracted attention as a next-generation drug screening system. However, three issues associated with BLM systems, i. e., their instability, the need for non-volatile organic solvents and a low efficiency of ion channel incorporation, have limited their use as a drug screening platform. In this personal account, we discuss our recent approaches to address these issues based on microfabrication. We also discuss the potential for using the BLM system combined with cell-free expression systems as a drug screening system for future personalized medicine.