22 June 2015 Optomechanical properties of cancer cells revealed by light-induced deformation and quantitative phase microscopy
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There is a growing interest in cell biology and clinical diagnostics in label-free, optical techniques as the interaction with the sample is minimized and substances like dyes or fixatives do not affect the investigated cells. Such techniques include digital holographic microscopy (DHM) and the optical stretching by fiber optical two beam traps. DHM enables quantitative phase contrast imaging and thereby the determination of the cellular refractive index, dry mass and the volume, whereas optical cell stretching reveals the deformability of cells. Since optical stretching strongly depends on the optical properties and the shape of the investigated material we combined the usage of fiber optical stretching and DHM for the characterization of pancreatic tumor cells. The risk of tumors is their potential to metastasize, spread through the bloodstream and build distal tumors/metastases. The grade of dedifferentiation in which the cells lose their cell type specific properties is a measure for this metastatic potential. The less differentiated the cells are, the higher is their risk to metastasize. Our results demonstrate that pancreatic tumor cells, which are from the same tumor but vary in their grade of differentiation, show significant differences in their deformability. The retrieved data show that differentiated cells have a higher stiffness than less differentiated cells of the same tumor. Even cells that differ only in the expression of a single tumor suppressor gene which is responsible for cell-cell adhesions can be distinguished by their mechanical properties. Additionally, results from DHM measurements yield that the refractive index shows only few variations, indicating that it does not significantly influence optical cell stretching. The obtained results show a promising new approach for the phenotyping of different cell types, especially in tumor cell characterization and cancer diagnostics.
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Lena Kastl, Lena Kastl, Björn Budde, Björn Budde, Michael Isbach, Michael Isbach, Christina Rommel, Christina Rommel, Björn Kemper, Björn Kemper, Jürgen Schnekenburger, Jürgen Schnekenburger, } "Optomechanical properties of cancer cells revealed by light-induced deformation and quantitative phase microscopy", Proc. SPIE 9529, Optical Methods for Inspection, Characterization, and Imaging of Biomaterials II, 952908 (22 June 2015); doi: 10.1117/12.2184764; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2184764

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