Scientists can use optical tweezers to trap beads, as depicted at the right, and catch a biomolecule, such as DNA, in between. This biomolecule can then be manipulated by moving the beads, while the force and extension are measured. Fluorescently labeled proteins can be visualized with confocal or STED fluorescence microscopy. The combination of optical tweezers with simultaneous multicolor fluorescence measurements allows correlating the mechanical properties of the DNA with the protein activity. With optical tweezers – fluorescence microscopy you can:
- Controllably manipulate, measure and visualize DNA and RNA structures to study their structural properties and force-induced structural transitions
- Measure conformational changes of DNA/RNA molecules and get insights into spontaneous- and transient-occurring phenomena, such as DNA breathing
- Visualize and measure interactions between nucleic acids in real-time at the single molecule level
- Perform experiments under biologically relevant conditions and highly crowded environments and link the in vitro experiment with the in vivo situation
- Study the effect of small molecules and biologics on DNA or RNA mechanics.
Scientists can use acoustic forces to manipulate, stretch and measure hundreds of single molecules at the same time. Multiple DNA, RNA or protein-coated molecules can be tethered between a bead and a glass surface. Using Acoustic Force Spectroscopy (AFS) technology you can then apply controlled forces on all beads synchronously and probe the mechanical properties of each molecule in parallel. With this highly parallel single-molecule method you can:
- Investigate the mechanics of many DNA or RNA molecules in the presence of different proteins and buffers, at the single-molecule level
- Measure conformational changes of DNA or RNA molecules and get insights into spontaneous- and transient-occurring phenomena, such as DNA breathing
- Perform experiments under biologically relevant conditions and link the in vitro experiment with the in vivo situation
- Study the effect of small molecules and biologics in DNA/RNA structure pathways
- Receive large datasets containing many single-molecule measurements from a single experiment.
The combination of optical tweezers and fluorescence microscopy allows for simultaneous manipulation and visualization of molecular interactions in real-time