Optical trapping reveals propulsion forces, power generation and motility efficiency of the unicellular parasites Trypanosoma brucei brucei

Stellamanns, E., Uppaluri, S., Hochstetter, A. , Heddergott, N., Engstler, M. and Pfohl, T. (2014) Optical trapping reveals propulsion forces, power generation and motility efficiency of the unicellular parasites Trypanosoma brucei brucei. Scientific Reports, 4, 6515. (doi:10.1038/srep06515) (PMID:25269514) (PMCID:PMC4180810)

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Abstract

Unicellular parasites have developed sophisitcated swimming mehanisms to survive in a wide range of environmentns. cel motility of African trypanosomes, parasites responsible for fatal illness in humans and animals, is crucial both in the insect vector and the mammalian host. Using millisecond-scale imaging in a microfluidics platform alom with a custom made optical trap, we are able to confine single cells to study trypanosome motility. From the trapping characteristics of the cells, we determine the propulsion force generated by cells with a single flagellum as well as of dividing trypanosomes with two fuly developed flagella. estimates of the dissipative energy and the power generation of single cells obtained from the motility paterns of the trypanosomes within the optical trap indicate that specific motility characteristics, in addition to locomotion, may be required for antibody clearance. Intorducing a steerable second optical trap we could further measure the force, which is generated at the flagellar tip. Differences in the cellular structure of the trypanosomes are correlated with trapping and motility characteristics and in consequence with their propulsion force, dissipative energy and power generation.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Hochstetter, Dr Axel
Authors: Stellamanns, E., Uppaluri, S., Hochstetter, A., Heddergott, N., Engstler, M., and Pfohl, T.
Subjects:Q Science > Q Science (General)
Q Science > QC Physics
Q Science > QR Microbiology
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > School of Engineering
Journal Name:Scientific Reports
Journal Abbr.:Sci. Rep.
Publisher:Nature Publishing Group
ISSN:2045-2322
ISSN (Online):2045-2322
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2014 The Authors
First Published:First published in Scientific Reports 4:6515
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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