Three-Dimensional Tracking of Carbon Nanotubes within Living Cells

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Research areas:
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Year: 2012
Type of Publication: Article
  • Nigel F. Reuel, Olivier Thouvenin Aurelie Dupont
Journal: Acs Nano Volume: 6
Number: 6
Month: JUN 2012
PT: J; TC: 1; UT: WOS:000305661300095
Three-dimensional tracking of single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWNT) with an orbital tracking microscope is demonstrated. We determine the viscosity regime (above 250 cP) at which the rotational diffusion coefficient can be used for length estimation. We also demonstrate SWNT tracking within live HeLa cells and use these findings to spatially map corral volumes (0.27-1.32 mu m(3)), determine an active transport velocity (455 nm/s), and calculate local viscosities (54-179 cP) within the cell. With respect to the future use of SWNTs as sensors in living cells, we conclude that the sensor must change the fluorescence signal by at least 4-13% to allow separation of the sensor signal from fluctuations due to rotation of the SWNT when measuring with a time resolution of 32 ms.