Spectromicroscopic observation of a live single cell in a biocompatible liquid-enclosing graphene system.

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Nanoscale, ISSN: 2040-3372, Vol: 10, Issue: 1, Page: 150-157

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Yu, Seong Uk; Lee, Hwiwon; Cho, Woo Jong; Kim, Chulhyun; Kang, Moon Cheol; Shin, Hyun-Joon; Kim, Namdong; Hahn, Sei Kwang; Kim, Kwang S
Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC); The Royal Society of Chemistry
Materials Science
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On-the-spot visualization of biochemical responses of intact live cells is vital for a clear understanding of cell biology. The main obstacles for instant visualization of biochemical responses of living cells arise from the lack of a sophisticated detecting technique which can simultaneously provide chemical analysis tools and the biocompatible wet conditions. Here we introduce scanning transmission X-ray microscopy (STXM) combined with a liquid-enclosing graphene system (LGS), offering biocompatible conditions and improved X-ray absorption spectra to probe the chemical responses of live cells under wet conditions. This set-up enables us to probe a subtle change in absorption spectra depending on the oxidation state of a miniscule amount of oxygen in the functional groups present in each cell and its surroundings containing a minimal amount of liquid water. As an example of in situ biochemical responses of wet cells, chemical responses of a single Colo 205 cell are visualized and analyzed using X-ray absorption near the oxygen K-edge. This spectromicroscopic method using LGS can be applied to diverse biological samples under wet conditions for the analysis of their biochemical responses.