Scanning Probe Microscopy Imaging and Characterization of Biological Structures from Biomolecules to Living Cells

  • Vincent B. Pizziconi
  • Darren L. Page
  • Catherine T. Connolly
  • Pamela A. Diamond


Much progress has been made on the imaging and characterization of biological structures using scanning probe microscopy (SPM) since the first images were reported on DNA almost a decade ago. SPM has now demonstrated its utility in imaging a diverse group of biological structures ranging from biomolecular and macromolecular structures to supramolecular structures and even living biological cells. It is now apparent that SPM has the potential to yield unique insight into biological structure and function. However, more work is needed to better understand probe-sample interactions, better define sample preparatory and SPM operational conditions, and develop independent image interpretation methods before the full potential of SPM imaging of biomolecular structures can be realized. Progress made in these areas will also help delineate the specific utility of the SPM methods (STM and AFM) for imaging biologicals. This is particularly true for larger biological structures, such as cells, which pose unique challenges and opportunities for SPM. This paper reviews the progress made to date on the SPM imaging and characterization of biomolecular structures from macromolecules to living cells and their self-assemblies.


Atomic Force Microscopy Scanning Tunneling Microscopy Scanning Tunneling Scanning Probe Microscopy Biological Structure 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • Vincent B. Pizziconi
    • 1
  • Darren L. Page
    • 1
  • Catherine T. Connolly
    • 1
  • Pamela A. Diamond
    • 1
  1. 1.Chemical, Bio and Materials Engineering DepartmentArizona State UniversityTempeUSA

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