Particle tracking force microscopy – Niels Bohr Institute - University of Copenhagen

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Particle tracking force microscopy

One of the great challenges in modern biophysics is to quantify surface energies and particle forces at the nanometer scale. Recent advances in microscopy techniques and tracking algorithms have made it possible to systematically track single particles. By tracking single particles of a diffusing particle population reversibly binding to a surface, one can quantify the Gibbs free energy of particle-surface binding. The particle population used should ideally be uniform, easy to produce, traceable and bio-compatible, making fluorescently labeled lipid vesicles an obvious choice.

My work aims to produce a proof of concept for this new method; to measure surface energies by tracking diffusing vesicles. As a patterned high contrast test surface a micro contact printed assay has been develop consisting of PEG and PEG-neutrAvidin.

In this talk I will explain the ongoing work of developing the method and optimizing the process. I will also comment on some of the challenges, preliminary results and future perspective of the work such as energy scans of whole cellular membranes.

Master mid-way report by Emil Pedersen