A proof of principle study on the extraction of biochemical and biomechanical properties from the same tumour cells using 3D confocal Raman and atomic force microscopy imaging – Towards a better understanding of tumour progression
Issue title: European Conference on Spectroscopy of Biological Molecules XV, 25–30 August 2014, Oxford, UK
Affiliations: Spectroscopy Products Division, Renishaw plc, Wotton-Under-Edge, Gloucestershire, UK | Bruker Nano Surfaces Division, Santa Barbara, CA, USA | Centre for Materials Science, Division of Chemistry, University of Central Lancashire, Preston, Lancashire, UK
Abstract: BACKGROUND: Biomechanical and biochemical properties are altered between healthy, cancerous, and metastatic cancer cells. These changes include altered lipid metabolism, resulting in varied lipid contents; varied nuclear organisation and size, which affect proliferation and transcription; and lower adhesion and rigidity, which enhance their capacities to escape primary tumour site, invade local stroma and metastasise. OBJECTIVE: In the literature, the mechanical and the chemical properties have been obtained from cells separately. We wish to demonstrate the techniques can be combined and applied to the same cells. This will allow for the correlation between chemical and mechanical properties to be studied, and therefore the gaining of knowledge on how the underlying chemistry affects the cell's mechanical properties. Such information has implications on a better understanding of tumour progression. METHODS: 3D confocal Raman and atomic force microscopy (AFM) imaging – which are correlative and complementary – were applied to the same U-87MG glioma cells to describe their organelles' chemistry and volumes and the cells' rigidity via Young's modulus (YM) calculation. RESULTS: Chemical information and the YM were successfully obtained from the same cell using the described combined techniques. Using principal component analysis (PCA), the cells were found to differ in their lipid composition (in particular, cholesterol ester) even though they were from the same culture. This strongly implies the need of single cell analysis. CONCLUSION: The combined techniques allowed for the extraction of biomechanical and biochemical information from the same cancer cells. This will enable the investigation of their correlation on the single cell level. The combined techniques can provide powerful insights that will lead to improvements in brain cancer treatments, preventative measures and provide targets for the effectiveness of treatment.
Keywords: Raman, AFM, metastases, 3D imaging, cancer, brain