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The Use of Quartz Crystal Microbalance in Cell Differentiation Detection

C-J Shih, W-W Ke and C-H Lieu
Industrial Technology Research Institute/Electronics Research & Service Organization, TW

acoustic wave sensor, cell differentiation, hematopoiesis, transcription factor, quartz crystal microbalance

We try to investigate whether the hematopoietic cell differentiation can be detected by Quartz Crystal Microbalance. Because certain hematopoietic transcription factors play a critical role in cell differentiation and lineage determination, they can be alternate markers of cell differentiation [2]. This study creates a new application and a novel methodology to detect the cell differentiation in Hematopoiesis by the Quartz Crystal Microbalance with acoustic wave sensor [3]. This method differs from the traditional ways such as detecting surface cell differentiation marker using fluorescence or luminescence, such as ELISA and flow cytometry. In our method, the variation of weight can be sensed by QCM sensor after the target molecules bind to the chip. Hence, we immobilized a DNA with specific sequence that could bind to transcription factor or specific protein for tracing the differentiation stage of hematopoietic cells. In the present study, we used the DNA molecules containing a 5’-thiol anchoring group which can form covalent bond with nano-gold [1]. After the DNA binds with transcription factor or determining protein, the weight change can be sensed by QCM [4]. To prove this, the binding complex structure can be observed by Field emission scanning electron microscopy (FE-SEM), Field emission X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (FE-XPS), immuno-fluorescence (IF) microscope or QCM devise. In our presentation, the Quartz crystal oscillation circuit, amplifies signal circuit, and the measurement set up are shown. Our results demonstrate that the modified structures can be detected by Fluorescence or optical microscope and we also confirm the formation of their covalent bond. In addition, we also show that the frequency changes of QCM (data not show) are due to weight increase which is resulted from the attachment of determining protein or transcription factor onto DNA. The data also indicate that using gold colloid to anchor DNA-SH could increase sensing areas. Taken together, our study provides an alternate way to look insight into how the transcription factors influence hematopoiesis in a relative simple and convenient manner

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