Amsterdam, the Netherlands – January 12, 2022 – LUMICKS today announced it has successfully installed a Quadruple C-Trap® Optical Tweezers – Fluorescence & Label-free Microscopy system at Rockefeller University, a leading biomedical research university in New York City. The C-Trap will support the research of Prof. Michael O’Donnell to investigate the mechanisms of DNA replication. Prof. O’Donnell collaborates with Prof. Shixin Liu, an expert in single molecule studies. Between O’Donnell and Liu, Rockefeller University will use the C-Trap to unveil the mechanisms of many types of enzymes, such as multi-protein DNA replicating machines of bacteria and eukaryotes.
Rockefeller University was the first organization in the United States to install a C-Trap instrument. The first system was installed in the lab of Prof. Shixin Liu, head of the Laboratory of Nanoscale Biophysics and Biochemistry, in 2016, and was used by his team to investigate protein machines that act on DNA and chromatin. The newly installed system will be used by Prof. Michael O’Donnell, a pioneer in the field of DNA replication. O’Donnell’s lab is using the new C-Trap to get a better understanding of how the replisome, a large and highly dynamic protein complex that carries out DNA replication, functions.
“My Postdoc has already learned to use the instrument, taught by Shixin’s lab members, and she has captured the ends of the leading and lagging strands of a replication fork, while holding the parental duplex in a third optical trap. Replication on this multi-trapped DNA will provide a unique perspective to our labs collaborative efforts to learn how this complex replication machinery functions,” commented Prof. O’Donnell.
Previous combined efforts of Liu and O’Donnell using the C-Trap instrument, created new insights into the dynamics of DNA replication. The results, published in the renowned journal Cell under the title of “Replication Fork Activation is Enabled by a Single-Stranded DNA Gate in CMG Helicase”, offered important new insights into the mechanism of an enzyme critical to DNA replication and elucidated previously perplexing parts of the genome duplication process. Importantly, these findings illuminate fundamental features of the DNA-replication mechanism and may have ramifications for understanding and treating disorders such as cancer.
“We are proud to support Rockefeller University and its community and demonstrate the value of the C-Trap as an established tool to evaluate DNA processes and advance biomedical science,” said Paul Wheeler, Chief Commercial Officer at LUMICKS. “The article published in Cell serves as a testament to the great research taking place at the university and how our technology enables novel research insights. We look forward to our continued collaboration with Rockefeller as they leverage the power of our dynamic-single molecule technology.”
LUMICKS is a leading life science tools company that develops equipment for Dynamic Single-Molecule and Cell Avidity analysis, two rapidly emerging areas in biology research and immuno-oncology. LUMICKS’ tools allow researchers to build the crucial and as yet unfinished bridge between structure and function at both a molecular and a cellular level. This is achieved by applying and measuring forces around biological interactions, enabling the detailed real-time analysis of underlying biological mechanisms. LUMICKS’ C-Trap® Optical Tweezers – Fluorescence & Label-free Microscopy, allows scientists to analyze complex biological processes in real-time. Similarly, the z-Movi® Cell Avidity Analyzer enables the measurement and selection of immune cells based on their real-time interactions with target cells.
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