Monitoring a degranulation process in a live mast cell is a quite important issue in immunology and pharmacology. Because the size of a granule is normally much smaller than the resolution limit of an optical microscope system, there is no direct real-time live cell imaging technique for observing degranulation processes except for fluorescence imaging techniques. In this research, we propose optical quantitative phase microscopy (QPM) as a new observation tool to study degranulation processes in a live mast cell without any fluorescence labeling. We measure the cell volumes and the cross sectional profiles (x-z plane) of an RBL-2H3 cell and a HeLa cell, before and after they are exposed to calcium ionophore A23187 and silver nanoparticles (AgNPs). We verify that the volume and the cross sectional line profile of the RBL-2H3 cell were changed significantly when it was exposed to A23187. When 50 μg/mL of AgNP is used instead of A23187, the measurements of cell volume and cross sectional profiles indicate that RBL-2H3 cells also follow degranulation processes. Degranulation processes for these cells are verified by monitoring the increase of intracellular calcium ([Ca 2+] i)and histamine with fluorescent methods.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
- Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
- Biomedical Engineering