A radically new platform technology for diagnostics
We have combined two cutting-edge laser technologies in one analytic instrument and in a single laser beam. We use laser trapping to create a force field that attracts and immobilizes cells in the laser focus, and record Raman spectra of the cells at the same time. This hybrid technology – which we call Raman Single Beam Trapping (Raman-SBT) – takes Raman spectroscopy to another level.
Laser trapping enables analysis of single cells suspended in solution
Raman spectral analysis provides a chemical fingerprint of the cells
Raman-SBT combines two Nobel Prize- winning discoveries
What is single beam trapping?
Single beam trapping uses a highly focused laser beam to manipulate particles and cells in all three dimensions in solutions. Focusing the laser beam through the liquid media exerts a gradient force on neighbouring particles, attracting them to the centre of the laser focal point.
Laser trapping can be used as micro-tweezers to sort, separate and immobilize cells for further analysis. microphotonX harnesses this technology to trap single cells or bacteria in samples and perform Raman spectral analysis.
What is Raman-spectroscopy?
Raman spectroscopy is commonly used as a chemical analysis tool. It utilizes the interaction of the photons with the molecules in a sample. This interaction generates scattered photons that have the same, higher, or lower energy than the excitation photons. The loss/increase in energy directly reflects the chemical composition of the scattering particle. This phenomenon is called Raman scattering and the change in photon energy can be measured in the form of Raman spectra and used to analyse biological samples.
How does Raman photons generate spectra?
Scattered Raman photons are detected and sorted on the detector based on their distinctive change in energy, i.e., their Raman shift. The signal from the detector is than processed and translated into Raman spectra, which display the number of photons detected with respect to their Raman shift. Each molecule in the laser focus contributes to the Raman spectra with its unique chemical fingerprint, generating valuable information about the identity and status of single cells in real time and without destroying the sample. microphotonX is a pioneer in the analysis of living cells using Raman spectroscopy.
Raman-SBT: Combining two laser technologies
Raman Single Beam Trapping (Raman-SBT) is a proprietary technology which is exclusively used in our Biospex instrument platform. The combination of Raman spectroscopy with laser trapping provides insights into thus far unmapped territories. Specific Raman signatures have been shown to be associated with a wide range of biological effects. Studies by cooperation partners and customers in a number of peer reviewed journals demonstrate the high relevance of our multiomics approach. And by holding the cells in the laser beam, we can run tests directly in liquid biopsies (blood or urine, for example). This is an important functional expansion of Raman technology.