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J Biomed Opt. 2011 May;16(5):051302. doi: 10.1117/1.3579200.

Survey on indirect optical manipulation of cells, nucleic acids, and motor proteins.

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Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02139, USA.


Optical tweezers have emerged as a promising technique for manipulating biological objects. Instead of direct laser exposure, more often than not, optically-trapped beads are attached to the ends or boundaries of the objects for translation, rotation, and stretching. This is referred to as indirect optical manipulation. In this paper, we utilize the concept of robotic gripping to explain the different experimental setups which are commonly used for indirect manipulation of cells, nucleic acids, and motor proteins. We also give an overview of the kind of biological insights provided by this technique. We conclude by highlighting the trends across the experimental studies, and discuss challenges and promising directions in this domain of active current research.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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