Navigation Links
Single-molecule manipulation for the masses
Date:6/1/2010

Cambridge, Mass., June 2, 2010 Scientists have developed a new massively-parallel approach for manipulating single DNA and protein molecules and studying their interactions under force. The finding appears in the June 2 issue of Biophysical Journal.

The team of researchers from the Rowland Institute at Harvard University claim that their technique, which they call "single molecule centrifugation", offers dramatic improvements in throughput and cost compared with more established techniques.

"By combining a microscope and a centrifuge, forces can be applied to many molecules at once while simultaneously observing their nano-to-microscale motions," explains author Wesley P. Wong, a Principal Investigator at Rowland.

Recent technologies such as optical and magnetic tweezers and the Atomic Force Microscope (AFM) have enabled the mechanical manipulation of single molecules, leading to new insights in biological systems ranging from DNA replication to blood clotting.

However, the tools used to perform these experiments are often expensive and can be tedious and complicated to use, limiting their use among scientists.

The Harvard researchers aimed to solve these problems by developing an instrument they call the Centrifuge Force Microscope (CFM), which uses centrifugal force to manipulate molecules.

Developing the instrument involved miniaturizing a light microscope and safely rotating it at high speeds while maintaining precision and control.

Experiments involve tethering thousands of micron-sized "carrier" particles to a surface and observing their motion as the sample rotates to generate the centrifugal force.

"We're really excited about this new method," says co-author Ken Halvorsen, a postdoctoral fellow. "After doing tedious single-molecule experiments for years, we thought there had to be a better way. Now, instead of doing one experiment thousands of times we can do thousands of experiments at once."

The scientists expect that the relative low cost and simplicity of the method will attract researchers who may be intimidated by the cost and technical skills required for other methods, ultimately enabling new discoveries in both health and basic science research.


'/>"/>

Contact: Michael Patrick Rutter
mrutter@seas.harvard.edu
617-496-3815
Harvard University
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology news :

1. Rice scientists make breakthrough in single-molecule sensing
2. Model for the assembly of advanced, single-molecule-based electronic components developed at Pitt
3. Flower power can still calm the masses
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Single-molecule manipulation for the masses
(Date:1/26/2017)... -- Acuity Market Intelligence today released the 2017 "Ten ... characterizes 2017 as a "breakout" year for biometrics ... new understanding of the potential benefits these technologies ... are often perceived as threats to privacy and ... Acuity Market intelligence. "However, taken together these technologies ...
(Date:1/24/2017)... YORK , Jan. 24, 2017 ... study of the laboratory use of nuclear magnetic ... 363 experienced end-users and profiled current practices, developments, ... years, as well as growth and opportunities. These ... Instrument suppliers, NMR instruments, needs and innovation requirements, ...
(Date:1/23/2017)... latest mobile market research from Acuity Market Intelligence reveals ... average price of a biometric smartphone decreased from $849 ... are now 120 sub-$150 models on the market at ... a year ago at an average price of $127. ... Acuity Market Intelligence Principal, "Biometric Smartphones are a global ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:2/22/2017)... 22, 2017  Aratana Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ: PETX), a pet ... innovative biopharmaceutical products for companion animals, will host a live ... ET to discuss financial results from the fourth quarter and ... participants and investors may access the audio webcast ... ...
(Date:2/22/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... February 22, 2017 , ... Park ... free AFM Luncheon for all SPIE attendees and Park customers ... just one block from the San Jose Convention Center. The luncheon will feature ...
(Date:2/22/2017)... Scientists propose in Nature blocking ... Gaucher and maybe other lysosomal storage diseases as a ... current therapies. An international research team led ... also included investigators from the University of Lübeck in ... 22. The study was conducted in mouse models of ...
(Date:2/22/2017)... , ... February 22, 2017 , ... ... and development of precision treatments for neurodegenerative diseases, today announced it has issued ... ProMIS approach.” This is one of a series of commentaries from ProMIS’s scientific ...
Breaking Biology Technology: