National Natural Science Foundation of China (61503372, 61522312, 61375107, 61327014, 61433017) and CAS FEA International Partnership Program for Creative Research Teams.
Cell mechanics has been proved to be an effective biomarker for indicating cellular states. The advent of atomic force microscopy (AFM) provides an exciting instrument for measuring the mechanical properties of single cells. However, current AFM single-cell mechanical measurements are commonly performed on cell lines cultured in vitro which are quite different from the primary cells in the human body. Investigating the mechanical properties of primary cells from clinical environments can help us to better understand cell behaviors. Here, by combining AFM with magnetic beads cell isolation, the viscoelastic properties of human primary B lymphocytes were quantitatively measured. B lymphocytes were isolated from the peripheral blood of healthy volunteers by density gradient centrifugation and CD19 magnetic beads cell isolation. The activity and specificity of the isolated cells were confirmed by fluorescence microscopy. AFM imaging revealed the surface topography and geometric parameters of B lymphocytes. The instantaneous modulus and relaxation time of living B lymphocytes were measured by AFM indenting technique, showing that the instantaneous modulus of human normal B lymphocytes was 2-3 kPa and the relaxation times were 0.03-0.06 s and 0.35-0.55 s. The differences in cellular visocoelastic properties between primary B lymphocytes and cell lines cultured in vitro were analyzed. The study proves the capability of AFM in quantifying the viscoelastic properties of individual specific primary cells from the blood sample of clinical patients, which will improve our understanding of the behaviors of cells in the human body.
Li M,Liu LQ,Xiao XB,et al. Viscoelastic Properties Measurement of Human Lymphocytes by Atomic Force Microscopy Based on Magnetic Beads Cell Isolation[J]. IEEE Transactions on Nanobioscience,2016,15(5):398-411.