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Characterization of single cells using nanostructures

Research Achievements

Characterization of single cells using nanostructures

Jennifer Pelowitz is working on characterization and interrogation of single cells using self-assembled nanostructures. Single cells are capable of a myriad of complex functions, all occurring on the nanoscale. The ability to tap into this vast library of functions is dependent on exploiting the biological/chemical interfaces that exist in nature. New approaches in cell immobilization such as cell-directed assembly (CDA) and cell-directed integration (CDI) offer a novel approach to studying and utilizing these functions in a controllable environment. Using these techniques, a variety of cells can be immobilized in a host matrix the cell itself has modified to allow for extended viability with the ability to maintain functionality. Cells can remain viable with no special storage or additional requirements for up to several months. One particular research achievement is successfully integration of living yeast cells with GFP fusion proteins into a silica sol-gel matrix.