Cell specific staining in Confocal Imaging

Over the next few weeks we are going to look at examples of where we have developed aptamers for cell imaging.

One of the most common methods for understanding the structure and function of biological systems is through confocal microscopy. Cell imaging technologies have been advancing at a rapid pace, however finding correct fluorescence system for cellular imaging is key to experimental design.

During one of our projects, we wanted to ensure that the aptamers we have selected are specific against a prostate cancer cell line. By conjugating a commercially available fluorophore we can use the aptamer for cell imaging. Both Actin and Nuclear stains were used as controls and to co-localise where the aptamer interacts with the cells.

Figure 1:

When comparing this fluorescently labelled aptamer to the other stains it is clear that it binds in a similar manner to the nuclear stain. This is especially apparent in the merged stain, where the green dye is seen to be more focused than the actin stain.

We can also see that no aptamers are present in the model cell line. One of the features of our aptamer selection is we can select specific aptamers using a cell line, without knowing what we are binding to. By using a normal cell line, we can remove any aptamers which are cross reactive to achieve the results shown.

If you would like to learn more about our aptamer selection services against cells, proteins or small molecules then please get in touch by emailing info@aptamergroup.co.uk or calling +44 1904 567 790.