Monday, January 16, 2017

Manipulation of cells with laser microbeam scissors and optical tweezers: a review

Karl Otto Greulich

The use of laser microbeams and optical tweezers in a wide field of biological applications from genomic to immunology is discussed. Microperforation is used to introduce a well-defined amount of molecules into cells for genetic engineering and optical imaging.
The microwelding of two cells induced by a laser microbeam combines their genetic outfit.
Microdissection allows specific regions of genomes to be isolated from a whole set of chromosomes. Handling the cells with optical tweezers supports investigation on the attack of immune systems against diseased or cancerous cells. With the help of laser microbeams, heart infarction can be simulated, and optical tweezers support studies on the heartbeat. Finally, laser microbeams are used to induce DNA damage in living cells for studies on cancer and ageing.

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