Special Issue "Optical Trapping and Manipulation: From Fundamentals to Applications"

A special issue of Micromachines (ISSN 2072-666X). This special issue belongs to the section "A:Physics".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 November 2019).

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Philip Jones
Website
Guest Editor
Department of Physics and Astronomy, University College London, Gower Street, London WC1E 6BT, UK
Interests: optical tweezers, optical binding, singular optics, biophysics
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals
Dr. Daniel R. Burnham
Website
Guest Editor
The Francis Crick Institute, 1 Midland Road, London NW1 1AT, UK
Interests: optical tweezers, DNA replication, biophysics
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

We are pleased to announce a Special Issue of Micromachines dedicated to the latest research in optical trapping, to be titled “Optical Trapping and Manipulation: From Fundamentals to Applications” and scheduled for publication in 2019.
In recognition of the broad impact of optical manipulation techniques across disciplines, the Special Issue will welcome contributions on all aspects of optical trapping and manipulation. These may comprise both theoretical and experimental studies, and applications of optical manipulation methods in fields including (but not limited to) single molecule biophysics, cell biology, nanotechnology, atmospheric chemistry, and fundamental optics will be particularly welcome in order to showcase the breadth of the current research.
The Special Issue will accept diverse forms of contributions, including research papers, short communications, methods, and review articles that represent the state-of-the-art in optical trapping.

Prof. Philip Jones
Dr. Daniel R. Burnham
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Micromachines is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Optical tweezers
  • Optical trapping
  • Optical manipulation

Published Papers (9 papers)

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Editorial

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Open AccessEditorial
Editorial for the Special Issue on Optical Trapping and Manipulation: From Fundamentals to Applications
Micromachines 2020, 11(4), 417; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi11040417 - 15 Apr 2020
Abstract
This Special Issue of Micromachines is devoted to optical trapping, and the enormous range of uses the method has found in the decades since its first demonstration [...] Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Optical Trapping and Manipulation: From Fundamentals to Applications)

Research

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Open AccessArticle
Fusing Artificial Cell Compartments and Lipid Domains Using Optical Traps: A Tool to Modulate Membrane Composition and Phase Behaviour
Micromachines 2020, 11(4), 388; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi11040388 - 07 Apr 2020
Cited by 1
Abstract
New technologies for manipulating biomembranes have vast potential to aid the understanding of biological phenomena, and as tools to sculpt novel artificial cell architectures for synthetic biology. The manipulation and fusion of vesicles using optical traps is amongst the most promising due to [...] Read more.
New technologies for manipulating biomembranes have vast potential to aid the understanding of biological phenomena, and as tools to sculpt novel artificial cell architectures for synthetic biology. The manipulation and fusion of vesicles using optical traps is amongst the most promising due to the level of spatiotemporal control it affords. Herein, we conduct a suite of feasibility studies to show the potential of optical trapping technologies to (i) modulate the lipid composition of a vesicle by delivering new membrane material through fusion events and (ii) manipulate and controllably fuse coexisting membrane domains for the first time. We also outline some noteworthy morphologies and transitions that the vesicle undergoes during fusion, which gives us insight into the mechanisms at play. These results will guide future exploitation of laser-assisted membrane manipulation methods and feed into a technology roadmap for this emerging technology. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Optical Trapping and Manipulation: From Fundamentals to Applications)
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Open AccessArticle
Single-Molecule Mechanics in Ligand Concentration Gradient
Micromachines 2020, 11(2), 212; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi11020212 - 19 Feb 2020
Cited by 1
Abstract
Single-molecule experiments provide unique insights into the mechanisms of biomolecular phenomena. However, because varying the concentration of a solute usually requires the exchange of the entire solution around the molecule, ligand-concentration-dependent measurements on the same molecule pose a challenge. In the present work [...] Read more.
Single-molecule experiments provide unique insights into the mechanisms of biomolecular phenomena. However, because varying the concentration of a solute usually requires the exchange of the entire solution around the molecule, ligand-concentration-dependent measurements on the same molecule pose a challenge. In the present work we exploited the fact that a diffusion-dependent concentration gradient arises in a laminar-flow microfluidic device, which may be utilized for controlling the concentration of the ligand that the mechanically manipulated single molecule is exposed to. We tested this experimental approach by exposing a λ-phage dsDNA molecule, held with a double-trap optical tweezers instrument, to diffusionally-controlled concentrations of SYTOX Orange (SxO) and tetrakis(4-N-methyl)pyridyl-porphyrin (TMPYP). We demonstrate that the experimental design allows access to transient-kinetic, equilibrium and ligand-concentration-dependent mechanical experiments on the very same single molecule. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Optical Trapping and Manipulation: From Fundamentals to Applications)
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Open AccessArticle
Optical Trapping and Manipulating with a Silica Microring Resonator in a Self-Locked Scheme
Micromachines 2020, 11(2), 202; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi11020202 - 15 Feb 2020
Cited by 1
Abstract
Based on the gradient force of evanescent waves in silica waveguides and add-drop micro-ring resonators, the optical trapping and manipulation of micro size particles is demonstrated in a self-locked scheme that maintains the on-resonance system even if there is a change in the [...] Read more.
Based on the gradient force of evanescent waves in silica waveguides and add-drop micro-ring resonators, the optical trapping and manipulation of micro size particles is demonstrated in a self-locked scheme that maintains the on-resonance system even if there is a change in the ambient temperature or environment. The proposed configuration allows the trapping of particles in the high Q resonator without the need for a precise wavelength adjustment of the input signal. On the one hand, a silicon dioxide waveguide having a lower refractive index and relatively larger dimensions facilitates the coupling of the laser with a single-mode fiber. Furthermore, the experimental design of the self-locked scheme reduces the sensitivity of the ring to the environment. This combination can trap the micro size particles with a high stability while manipulating them with high accuracy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Optical Trapping and Manipulation: From Fundamentals to Applications)
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Open AccessCommunication
Auxiliary Optomechanical Tools for 3D Cell Manipulation
Micromachines 2020, 11(1), 90; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi11010090 - 13 Jan 2020
Cited by 1
Abstract
Advances in laser and optoelectronic technologies have brought the general concept of optomechanical manipulation to the level of standard biophysical tools, paving the way towards controlled experiments and measurements of tiny mechanical forces. Recent developments in direct laser writing (DLW) have enabled the [...] Read more.
Advances in laser and optoelectronic technologies have brought the general concept of optomechanical manipulation to the level of standard biophysical tools, paving the way towards controlled experiments and measurements of tiny mechanical forces. Recent developments in direct laser writing (DLW) have enabled the realization of new types of micron-scale optomechanical tools, capable of performing designated functions. Here we further develop the concept of DLW-fabricated optomechanically-driven tools and demonstrate full-3D manipulation capabilities over biological objects. In particular, we resolved the long-standing problem of out-of-plane rotation in a pure liquid, which was demonstrated on a living cell, clamped between a pair of forks, designed for efficient manipulation with holographic optical tweezers. The demonstrated concept paves the way for the realization of flexible tools for performing on-demand functions over biological objects, such as cell tomography and surgery to name just few. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Optical Trapping and Manipulation: From Fundamentals to Applications)
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Open AccessArticle
Impact of Nanocapsules on Red Blood Cells Interplay Jointly Assessed by Optical Tweezers and Microscopy
Micromachines 2020, 11(1), 19; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi11010019 - 23 Dec 2019
Cited by 3
Abstract
In the framework of novel medical paradigm the red blood cells (RBCs) have a great potential to be used as drug delivery carriers. This approach requires an ultimate understanding of the peculiarities of mutual interaction of RBC influenced by nano-materials composed the drugs. [...] Read more.
In the framework of novel medical paradigm the red blood cells (RBCs) have a great potential to be used as drug delivery carriers. This approach requires an ultimate understanding of the peculiarities of mutual interaction of RBC influenced by nano-materials composed the drugs. Optical tweezers (OT) is widely used to explore mechanisms of cells’ interaction with the ability to trap non-invasively, manipulate and displace living cells with a notably high accuracy. In the current study, the mutual interaction of RBC with polymeric nano-capsules (NCs) is investigated utilizing a two-channel OT system. The obtained results suggest that, in the presence of NCs, the RBC aggregation in plasma satisfies the ‘cross-bridges’ model. Complementarily, the allocation of NCs on the RBC membrane was observed by scanning electron microscopy (SEM), while for assessment of NCs-induced morphological changes the tests with the human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSC) was performed. The combined application of OT and advanced microscopy approaches brings new insights into the conception of direct observation of cells interaction influenced by NCs for the estimation of possible cytotoxic effects. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Optical Trapping and Manipulation: From Fundamentals to Applications)
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Open AccessArticle
Influence of Pulsed He–Ne Laser Irradiation on the Red Blood Cell Interaction Studied by Optical Tweezers
Micromachines 2019, 10(12), 853; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi10120853 - 05 Dec 2019
Cited by 5
Abstract
Optical Tweezers (OT), as a revolutionary innovation in laser physics, has been extremely useful in studying cell interaction dynamics at a single-cell level. The reversible aggregation process of red blood cells (RBCs) has an important influence on blood rheological properties, but the underlying [...] Read more.
Optical Tweezers (OT), as a revolutionary innovation in laser physics, has been extremely useful in studying cell interaction dynamics at a single-cell level. The reversible aggregation process of red blood cells (RBCs) has an important influence on blood rheological properties, but the underlying mechanism has not been fully understood. The regulating effects of low-level laser irradiation on blood rheological properties have been reported. However, the influence of pulsed laser irradiation, and the origin of laser irradiation effects on the interaction between RBCs remain unclear. In this study, RBC interaction was assessed in detail with OT. The effects of both continuous and pulsed low-level He–Ne laser irradiation on RBC aggregation was investigated within a short irradiation period (up to 300 s). The results indicate stronger intercellular interaction between RBCs in the enforced disaggregation process, and both the cell contact time and the initial contact area between two RBCs showed an impact on the measured disaggregation force. Meanwhile, the RBC aggregation force that was independent to measurement conditions decreased after a short time of pulsed He–Ne laser irradiation. These results provide new insights into the understanding of the RBC interaction mechanism and laser irradiation effects on blood properties. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Optical Trapping and Manipulation: From Fundamentals to Applications)
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Review

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Open AccessFeature PaperReview
Optical Micromachines for Biological Studies
Micromachines 2020, 11(2), 192; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi11020192 - 13 Feb 2020
Cited by 1
Abstract
Optical tweezers have been used for biological studies since shortly after their inception. However, over the years research has suggested that the intense laser light used to create optical traps may damage the specimens being studied. This review aims to provide a brief [...] Read more.
Optical tweezers have been used for biological studies since shortly after their inception. However, over the years research has suggested that the intense laser light used to create optical traps may damage the specimens being studied. This review aims to provide a brief overview of optical tweezers and the possible mechanisms for damage, and more importantly examines the role of optical micromachines as tools for biological studies. This review covers the achievements to date in the field of optical micromachines: improvements in the ability to produce micromachines, including multi-body microrobots; and design considerations for both optical microrobots and the optical trapping set-up used for controlling them are all discussed. The review focuses especially on the role of micromachines in biological research, and explores some of the potential that the technology has in this area. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Optical Trapping and Manipulation: From Fundamentals to Applications)
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Open AccessReview
Optical Fiber Tweezers: A Versatile Tool for Optical Trapping and Manipulation
Micromachines 2020, 11(2), 114; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi11020114 - 21 Jan 2020
Cited by 2
Abstract
Optical trapping is widely used in different areas, ranging from biomedical applications, to physics and material sciences. In recent years, optical fiber tweezers have attracted significant attention in the field of optical trapping due to their flexible manipulation, compact structure, and easy fabrication. [...] Read more.
Optical trapping is widely used in different areas, ranging from biomedical applications, to physics and material sciences. In recent years, optical fiber tweezers have attracted significant attention in the field of optical trapping due to their flexible manipulation, compact structure, and easy fabrication. As a versatile tool for optical trapping and manipulation, optical fiber tweezers can be used to trap, manipulate, arrange, and assemble tiny objects. Here, we review the optical fiber tweezers-based trapping and manipulation, including dual fiber tweezers for trapping and manipulation, single fiber tweezers for trapping and single cell analysis, optical fiber tweezers for cell assembly, structured optical fiber for enhanced trapping and manipulation, subwavelength optical fiber wire for evanescent fields-based trapping and delivery, and photothermal trapping, assembly, and manipulation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Optical Trapping and Manipulation: From Fundamentals to Applications)
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