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Sci Rep. 2013;3:1855. doi: 10.1038/srep01855.

Tracking single-particle dynamics via combined optical and electrical sensing.

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  • 1The Institute of Scientific and Industrial Research, Osaka University, 8-1 Mihogaoka, Ibaraki, Osaka 567-0047, Japan.


While fluorescent imaging has been extensively used for single-particle tracking, temporal and spatial resolution of the wide-field microscopy technology is not satisfactory for investigating fast-moving features. Here we report a method for probing nanometer-scale motion of an individual particle through a microstructured channel at sub-MHz by combining a resistive pulse technique to the optical sensing. We demonstrate unambiguous discriminations of translocation and non-translocation events inferred from spike-like electrical signals by fluorescence images captured synchronously to ionic current measurements. We also find a trajectory-dependent translocation dynamics of voltage-driven single-particles through a microchannel. This electrical/optical approach may find applications in sensor technologies based on micro- and nano-electromechanical systems.

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