(143e) Elastic Mapping of Epithelial Cells Treated with Nanomaterials

Authors: 
Dinu, C. Z., West Virginia University
Dong, C., West Virginia University
Sargent, L. Q., National Institute for Occupation Safety and Health
Lowry, D. H., National Institute for Occupation Safety and Health


Topological analysis of cells and subcellular structures is one of the major trends in biology. Since the spatial and temporal changes of the mechanical properties of living cells reflect complex underlying physiological processes, there have been considerable efforts in following these changes and providing valuable insight into the biological importance of cellular mechanics and its regulation. In here we propose to study the cell mechanics and regulation in response to exposure to nanomaterials. Nanomaterials have been recently used in biolabeling, biodetection, biomolecule delivery, bioseparation or regenerative medicine and tissue engineering. Specifically, we use Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM) for probing cellular topography and studying mechanical properties of immobilized and live cells, and cells exposed to nanomaterials. Our aim is to produce robust, internally quantitative maps of relative elasticity of fixed cells and compare those maps to those of live cells, and cells incubated with nanomaterials. Our experimental results aim to demonstrate that spherical mapping of cells can be correlated with cell dynamics and thus provide the possibility to develop further topological-based approaches to probe the structure-function relationship in live cells exposed to nanomaterials, all with high spatial resolution and increased sensitivity.