Figure 7: 100x100 µm scans of fixed glioblastoma cells recorded on a FLIM/AFM setup. The fluorescence intensity and FLIM signals are expressed in arbitrary units but all AFM channels are directly quantitative. The z-scales are (from bottom to top of the color bar): topography = 0–5 µm; PeakForce error = 0–400 pN; Elasticity = 0–700 kPa; Adhesion = 0–150 pN = Deformation = 0–150 nm; and Dissipatio = 0–3 keV.
Figure 7: 100x100 µm scans of fixed glioblastoma cells recorded on a FLIM/AFM setup. The fluorescence intensity and FLIM signals are expressed in arbitrary units but all AFM channels are directly quantitative. The z-scales are (from bottom to top of the color bar): topography = 0–5 µm; PeakForce error = 0–400 pN; Elasticity = 0–700 kPa; Adhesion = 0–150 pN = Deformation = 0–150 nm; and Dissipatio = 0–3 keV.

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Both Inverted Optical Microscopy (IOM) and Atomic Force Microscopy can be operated in a very wide range of specialty modes, and both have proven to be essential to the study of biological specimens in near-physiological environments. Where IOM, particularly fluorescence microscopy, is based on the staining and tracking of molecules inside the cells or tissues to allow direct observation of of cell structure and dynamic processes, atomic force microscopy is primarily a surface investigation technique where the tip physically interacts with the sample to enable topographical, electrical, mechanical or chemical characterization. To monitor both types of information simultaneously, fully integrated optical and atomic force microscope (AFM) systems, such as the Bioscope CatalystTM, have been developed. This application note reviews a few representative applications that can be covered by this type of AFM/IOM approach.

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