Nanoaspiration: Development and Applications Event as iCalendar

07 December 2016

11am - 12pm

Venue: 303-SLT1

Speaker: Ankita Gangotra, PhD Candidate, Department of Physics, University of Auckland

For some time, it has been known that there is a difference in the mechanical properties of different types of biological cells. For example, cancer cells can be stiffer or softer than normal cells. But what about the mechanics of soft particles on the nano-scale, such as extracellular vesicles and exosomes? What effect does disease have on their mechanical properties? Can they be characterised on the basis of mechanical properties?

This project aims to answer these questions by combining two pre-existing techniques, scanning ion conductance microscopy and micropipette aspiration, to achieve ‘Nanoaspiration’. Nano-pipettes are used in this study to identify nanoparticles, and will in the future be used to aspirate or suck up soft nanoparticles for mechanical sensing. The negative pressure applied through the pipette for aspiration can be directly computed to infer properties such as adhesion, stiffness and Young’s Modulus. This talk will discuss the theory and development of Nanoaspiration apparatus.  Preliminary results related to nanopore experiments obtained during the first year will be presented. Future avenues of research will also be discussed.