22 February 2017 Effects of cholesterol depletion on membrane nanostructure in MCF-7 cells by atomic force microscopy
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Abstract
The cell membrane is composed of phospholipids, glycolipids, cholesterol and proteins that are dynamic and heterogeneous distributed in the bilayer structure and many researches have showed that the plasma membrane in eukaryotic cells contains microdomains termed “lipid raft” in which cholesterol, sphingolipids and specific membrane proteins are enriched. Cholesterol extraction induced lipid raft disruption is one of the most widely used methods for lipid raft research and MβCD is a type of solvent to extract the cholesterol from cell membranes. In this study, the effect of MβCD treatment on the membrane nanostructure in MCF-7 living cells was investigated by atomic force microscopy. Different concentrations of MβCD were selected to deplete cholesterol for 30 min and the viability of cells was tested by MTT assay to obtain the optimal concentration. Then the nanostructure of the cell membrane was detected. The results show that an appropriate concentration of MβCD can induce the alteration of cell membranes nanostructure and the roughness of membrane surface decreases significantly. This may indicate that microdomains of the cell membrane disappear and the cell membrane appears more smoothly. Cholesterol can affect nanostructure and inhomogeneity of the plasma membrane in living cells.
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Yuhua Wang, Ningcheng Jiang, Aisi Shi, Liqin Zheng, Hongqin Yang, Shusen Xie, "Effects of cholesterol depletion on membrane nanostructure in MCF-7 cells by atomic force microscopy", Proc. SPIE 10077, Nanoscale Imaging, Sensing, and Actuation for Biomedical Applications XIV, 1007715 (22 February 2017); doi: 10.1117/12.2253385; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2253385
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