Diffusion inside living human cells

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

Naturally occurring lipid granules diffuse in the cytoplasm and can be used as tracers to map out the viscoelastic landscape inside living cells. Using optical trapping and single particle tracking we found that lipid granules exhibit anomalous diffusion inside human umbilical vein endothelial cells. For these cells the exact diffusional pattern of a particular granule depends on the physiological state of the cell and on the localization of the granule within the cytoplasm. Granules located close to the actin rich periphery of the cell move less than those located towards to the center of the cell or within the nucleus. Also, granules in cells which are stressed by intense laser illumination or which have attached to a surface for a long period of time move in a more restricted fashion than those within healthy cells. For granules diffusing in healthy cells, in regions away from the cell periphery, occurrences of weak ergodicity breaking are observed, similar to the recent observations inside living fission yeast cells [1].
Original languageEnglish
JournalEuropean Physical Journal. Special Topics
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)75-84
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2012

ID: 38171149