1Department of Medicine, Division of Infectious Diseases, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, 2Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, The Ohio State University, 3Center for Computational and Integrative Biology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, 4Dept. of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, Vanderbilt University
A method is described to individually select, manipulate, and image live pathogens using an optical trap coupled to a spinning disk microscope. The optical trap provides spatial and temporal control of organisms and places them adjacent to host cells. Fluorescence microscopy captures dynamic intercellular interactions with minimal perturbation to cells.
Construction of a High Resolution Microscope with Conventional and Holographic Optical Trapping Capabilities
The system described herein employs a traditional optical trap as well as an independent holographic optical trapping line, capable of creating and manipulating multiple traps. This allows for the creation of complex geometric arrangements of refractive particles while also permitting simultaneous high-speed, high-resolution measurements of the activity of biological enzymes.
The following setup approach details low power optical trapping of dielectric nanoparticles using a double-nanohole in metal film.
We present a protocol for bending filamentous bacterial cells attached to a cover-slip surface with an optical trap to measure the cellular bending stiffness.
Utilization of Plasmonic and Photonic Crystal Nanostructures for Enhanced Micro- and Nanoparticle Manipulation
1Electrical Engineering Department, University of Washington, 2Division of Human Biology, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, 3Molecular and Cellular Biology Program, University of Washington, 4Clinical Research, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, 5Public Health Sciences, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center
Plasmonic tweezers and photonic crystal nanostructures are shown to produce useful enhancements in the efficiency and orientation control of optically trapping micro- and nano-particles.
We illustrate the use of a constant force axial optical tweezers to explore the mechanical properties of short DNA molecules. By stretching DNA axially, we minimize steric hindrances and artifacts arising in conventional lateral manipulation, allowing us to study DNA molecules as short as ~100 nm.
In this article, we present a microfluidic-based method for particle confinement based on hydrodynamic flow. We demonstrate stable particle trapping at a fluid stagnation point using a feedback control mechanism, thereby enabling confinement and micromanipulation of arbitrary particles in an integrated microdevice.
In this article we describe the use of magnetic tweezers to study the effect of force on enzymatic proteolysis at the single molecule level in a highly parallelizable manner.
This video describes the manipulation of cultured neurons using laser tweezers in vitro.
1Department of Pediatrics, Emory University School of Medicine, 2Wallace H. Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology and Emory University, 3Aflac Cancer Center and Blood Disorders Service of Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, 4Winship Cancer Institute of Emory University
A method to culture an endothelial cell monolayer throughout the entire inner 3D surface of a microfluidic device with microvascular-sized channels (<30 μm) is described. This in vitro microvasculature model enables the study of biophysical interactions between blood cells, endothelial cells, and soluble factors in hematologic diseases.
Differential Imaging of Biological Structures with Doubly-resonant Coherent Anti-stokes Raman Scattering (CARS)
A combination of three single wavelength short-pulsed lasers is used to generate coherent anti-Stokes Raman scattering (CARS) and doubly-resonant CARS (DR-CARS). The difference between these signals provides enhanced sensitivity for otherwise difficult to detect coherent Raman signals, enabling imaging of weak Raman scatterers.
Optical-resolution photoacoustic microscopy (OR-PAM) is an emerging technology capable of imaging optical absorption contrasts in vivo with cellular resolution and sensitivity. Here, we provide a visualized instruction on the experimental protocols of OR-PAM, including system configuration, system alignment, typical in vivo experimental procedures, and functional imaging schemes.
Polycrystalline silicon thin-film solar cells on glass are fabricated by deposition of boron and phosphorous doped silicon layers followed by crystallisation, defect passivation and metallisation. Plasmonic light-trapping is introduced by forming Ag nanoparticles on the silicon cell surface capped with a diffused reflector resulting in ~45% photocurrent enhancement.
We describe the experimental method to deposit nanostructured oxide thin films by nanosecond Pulsed Laser Deposition (PLD) in the presence of a background gas. By using this method Al-doped ZnO (AZO) films, from compact to hierarchically structured as nano-tree forests, can be deposited.
We discuss the construction and operation of a complex nonlinear optical system that uses ultrafast all-optical switching to isolate Raman from fluorescence signals. Using this system we are able to successfully separate Raman and fluorescence signals utilizing pulse energies and average powers that remain biologically safe.
Separating Beads and Cells in Multi-channel Microfluidic Devices Using Dielectrophoresis and Laminar Flow
1Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2Micro and Nanotechnology Lab, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 3Mechanical Science and Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 4Bioengineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Dielectrophoresis (DEP) is an effective method to manipulate cells. Printed circuit boards (PCB) can provide inexpensive, reusable and effective electrodes for contact-free cell manipulation within microfluidic devices. By combining PDMS-based microfluidic channels with coverslips on PCBs, we demonstrate bead and cell manipulation and separation within multichannel microfluidic devices.
In this protocol, we demonstrate the fabrication of a microactuator array of vertically displaced posts on which the technology is based, and how this base technology can be modified to conduct high-throughput mechanically dynamic cell culture in both two-dimensional and three-dimensional culture paradigms.
1Department of Molecular & Human Genetics, Baylor College of Medicine (BCM), 2Precisionary Instruments Inc., 3Departments of Molecular & Human Genetics and Neuroscience, Baylor College of Medicine (BCM), 4Jan and Dan Duncan Neurological Research Institute, Texas Children's Hospital
Here we describe a rapid and simple method to image fluorescently labeled cells in semi-thick brain slices. By fixing, slicing, and optically clearing brain tissue we describe how standard epifluorescent or confocal imaging can be used to visualize individual cells and neuronal networks within intact nervous tissue.
Application and direct measurements of forces on neurons in the 2-1000 microdyne range are achieved with high precision using calibrated glass needles. This methodology can be used to control and measure several aspects of axonal development, including axonal initiation, axonal tension, velocity of axonal elongation, and force vectors.
This protocol describes the development of a microfluidic device for investigating bacterial chemotaxis in stable concentration gradients of chemoeffectors.
Demonstrating the Uses of the Novel Gravitational Force Spectrometer to Stretch and Measure Fibrous Proteins
This is a step-by step guide showing the purpose, operation, and representative results from the novel gravitational force spectrometer.
A method to measure the persistence length or flexural rigidity of biopolymers is described. The method uses a kinesin-driven microtubule gliding assay to experimentally determine the persistence length of individual microtubules and is adaptable to actin-based gliding assays.
Biophysical Assays to Probe the Mechanical Properties of the Interphase Cell Nucleus: Substrate Strain Application and Microneedle Manipulation
1Brigham and Women's Hospital / Harvard Medical School, Department of Medicine, Cardiovascular Division, 2Weill Institute for Cell and Molecular Biology & Department of Biomedical Engineering, Cornell University
We present two independent, microscope-based tools to measure the induced nuclear and cytoskeletal deformations in single, living adherent cells in response to global or localized strain application. These techniques are used to determine nuclear stiffness (i.e., deformability) and to probe intracellular force transmission between the nucleus and the cytoskeleton.
1Department of Anesthesiology, Perioperative and Pain Medicine, Children's Hospital Boston and Harvard Medical School, 2Departments of Cardiac Surgery, Children's Hospital Boston and Harvard Medical School
This article describes a high temporal and spatial resolution technique to optically image action potential movement on the surface of Langendorff-perfused rat hearts using a potentiometric dye (di-8-ANEPPS).
Protocol describing the application of a flow cell system for growing and analyzing microbial biofilms for Confocal Laser Scanning Microscopy (CLSM).
This article describes the basic procedures for conducting optical mapping experiments in the Langendorff-perfused rabbit heart using the panoramic imaging system, and the dual (voltage and calcium) imaging modality.
This is a protocol to isolate active full length Kinesin from Drosophila embryos for single-molecule biophysical studies. We show how to collect embryos, make the embryo lysate, and then polymerize microtubules (MTs). Kinesin is purified by immobilizing it on the MTs, spinning down the Kinesin-MT complexes, and then releasing the kinesin from the MTs via ATP addition.
1Undergraduate Program, Rice University, 2Proteomics Facility, Department of Pathology, University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, 3Department of Melanoma Medical Oncology, University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, 4University of Texas Graduate School of Biological Sciences at Houston
A specific and sensitive method to gain insight into the expression profile of glycosphingolipid antigens in immune organs and cells is described. The method takes advantage of the ion trap mass spectrometry allowing step-wise fragmentation of glycosphingolipid molecules for structural analysis in comparison to chemically synthesized standards.
Neutrophil Extracellular Traps (NETs) are an important innate immune mechanism to fight pathogenic bacteria, fungi and parasites. Here we describe methods to isolate neutrophil granulocytes from human blood and to activate them to form NETs. We present preparation techniques to visualize NETs in light and electron microscopy.
PRP as a New Approach to Prevent Infection: Preparation and In vitro Antimicrobial Properties of PRP
1Department of Orthopaedics, School of Medicine, West Virginia University, 2Department of Orthopaedics, Stem Cell Research Center, University of Pittsburgh, 3WVNano Initiative, 4Mary Babb Randolph Cancer Center
Implant-associated infection is a significant clinical complication. This study describes an approach using platelet-rich plasma (PRP) to prevent implant-associated infections, presents the protocol for preparing PRP with constant platelet concentration, and reports the newly identified antimicrobial properties of PRP and related protocols for examining such antimicrobial properties in vitro.
Detection of Nitric Oxide and Superoxide Radical Anion by Electron Paramagnetic Resonance Spectroscopy from Cells using Spin Traps
Electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) spectroscopy was employed to detect nitric oxide from bovine aortic endothelial cells and superoxide radical anion from human neutrophils using iron (II)-N-methyl-D-glucamine dithiocarbamate, Fe(MGD)2 and 5,5-dimethyl-1-pyroroline-N-oxide, DMPO, respectively.
Fluorescent-core microcavity sensors employ a high-index quantum-dot coating in the channel of silica microcapillaries. Changes in the refractive index of fluids pumped into the capillary channel cause shifts in the microcavity fluorescence spectrum that can be used to analyze the channel medium.
We describe the preparation of colloidal quantum dots with minimized hydrodynamic size for single-molecule fluorescence imaging. Compared to conventional quantum dots, these nanoparticles are similar in size to globular proteins and are optimized for single-molecule brightness, stability against photodegradation, and resistance to nonspecific binding to proteins and cells.
The production of hyperpolarized xenon by means of spin exchange optical pumping (SEOP) is described. This method yields a ~10000-fold enhancement of the nuclear spin polarization of Xe-129 and has applications in nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy and imaging. Examples of gas phase and solution state experiments are given.
This paper details the dissection procedure, instrumental setup, and experimental conditions during optical mapping of transmembrane potential (Vm) and intracellular calcium transient (CaT) in intact isolated Langendorff perfused mouse hearts.
The effect of substrata stiffness on cellular function can be modeled in vitro using polyacrylamide hydrogels of varying compliances.
Direct Observation of Phagocytosis and NET-formation by Neutrophils in Infected Lungs using 2-photon Microscopy
We show, how to use 2-photon microscopy for the observation of the dynamics of neutrophil granulocytes in infected lungs while they phagocytose pathogens or produce neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs).
Efforts to isolate the catalytic subunit of telomerase, TERT, in sufficient quantities for structural studies, have been met with limited success for more than a decade. Here, we present methods for the isolation of the recombinant Tribolium castaneum TERT (TcTERT) and the reconstitution of the active T. castaneum telomerase ribonucleoprotein (RNP) complex in vitro.
Spin-trapping ESR spectroscopy was used to study the effect of plant antioxidants lycopene, pycnogenol and grape seed extract on scavenging gas-phase free radicals in cigarette smoke.
Sampling Human Indigenous Saliva Peptidome Using a Lollipop-Like Ultrafiltration Probe: Simplify and Enhance Peptide Detection for Clinical Mass Spectrometry
Considering saliva sampling for future clinical application, a lollipop-like ultrafiltration (LLUF) probe was fabricated to fit in the human oral cavity. Direct analysis of undigested saliva by NanoLC-LTQ mass spectrometry demonstrated the ability of LLUF probes to remove large proteins and high abundance proteins, and make low-abundant peptides more detectable.
Examining the Conformational Dynamics of Membrane Proteins in situ with Site-directed Fluorescence Labeling
We will describe a method which measures the kinetics of ion transport of membrane proteins alongside site-specific analysis of conformational changes using fluorescence on single cells. This technique is adaptable to ion channels, transporters and ion pumps and can be utilized to determine distance constraints between protein subunits.
A method for large-scale purification of the APP intracellular domain (AICD) is described. We also describe methodology to induce in vitro AICD aggregation and visualization by atomic force microscopy. The methods described are useful for biochemical/structural characterization of the AICD and the effects of molecular chaperones on its aggregation.
Femtosecond-laser direct-writing is frequently used to create three-dimensional (3D) patterns in polymers and glasses. However, patterning metals in 3D remains a challenge. We describe a method for fabricating silver nanostructures embedded inside a polymer matrix using a femtosecond laser centered at 800 nm.
A high-sensitivity photonic micro sensor was developed for electric field detection. The sensor exploits the optical modes of a dielectric sphere. Changes in the external electric field perturb the sphere morphology leading to shifts in its optical modes. The electric field strength is measured by monitoring these optical shifts.
Mass spectrometry has proven to be a valuable tool for analyzing large protein complexes. This method enables insights into the composition, stoichiometry and overall architecture of multi-subunit assemblies. Here, we describe, step-by-step, how to perform a structural mass spectrometry analysis, and characterize macromolecular structures.
We present a noninvasive sampling approach to efficiently collect hair samples from elusive small mammals, as shown for the American pika. We demonstrate the utility of this method by extracting DNA from sampled hair and amplifying several types of molecular markers commonly used in studies of wildlife ecology and conservation.
Targeting Olfactory Bulb Neurons Using Combined In Vivo Electroporation and Gal4-Based Enhancer Trap Zebrafish Lines
1Department of Biology, Pace University, 2Cellular and Molecular Medicine, University of California, San Diego, 3Division of Cell Biology and Cell Physiology, Zoological Institute, Braunschweig University of Technology
The temporal and spatial resolution of genetic manipulations determines the spectrum of biological phenomena that they can perturb. Here we use temporally and spatially discrete in vivo electroporation, combined with transgenic lines of zebrafish, to induce expression of a GFP transgene specifically in neurons of the developing olfactory bulb.
We describe a method for observing real time replication of individual DNA molecules mediated by proteins of the bacteriophage replication system.
1Department of Physiology, David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles, 2Department of Anesthesiology, David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles, 3Department of Anesthesiology, Medicine and Physiology, David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles
We describe a simple protocol to identify brain proteins that bind to the full length C terminus of ATP-gated P2X2 receptors. The extension and systematic application of this approach to all P2X receptors is expected to lead to a better understanding of P2X receptor signaling.
High-Resolution Endocardial and Epicardial Optical Mapping in a Sheep Model of Stretch-Induced Atrial Fibrillation
This report provides a detailed description of the methodology and results of simultaneous endocardial and epicardial optical mapping of electrical excitation in the intact left atrium of a Langendorff-perfused sheep heart during stretch-induced atrial fibrillation.