22 February 2017 Detecting infrared luminescence and non-chemical signaling of living cells: single cell mid-IR spectroscopy in cryogenic environments
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Abstract
Many life-relevant interaction energies are in IR range, and it is reasonable to believe that some biochemical reactions inside cells can results in emission of IR photons. Cells can use this emission for non-chemical and non-electrical signaling. Detecting weak infrared radiation from live cells is complicated because of strong thermal radiation background and absorption of radiation by tissues. A microfluidic device with live cells inside a vacuum cryogenic environment should suppress this background, and thereby permit observation of live cell auto-luminescence or signaling in the IR regime. One can make IR-transparent windows not emitting in this range, so only the cell and a small amount of liquid around it will emit infrared radiation. Currently mid-IR spectroscopy of single cells requires the use of a synchrotron source to measure absorption or reflection spectra. Decreasing of thermal radiation background will allow absorption and reflection spectroscopy of cells without using synchrotron light. Moreover, cell auto-luminescence can be directly measured. The complete absence of thermal background radiation for cryogenically cooled samples allows the use IR photon-sensitive detectors and obtaining single molecule sensitivity in IR photo-luminescence measurements. Due to low photon energies, photo-luminescence measurements will be non-distractive for pressures samples. The technique described here is based upon US patent 9366574.
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Sergey Pereverzev, "Detecting infrared luminescence and non-chemical signaling of living cells: single cell mid-IR spectroscopy in cryogenic environments", Proc. SPIE 10075, Biophysics, Biology and Biophotonics II: the Crossroads, 100750T (22 February 2017); doi: 10.1117/12.2271093; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2271093
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