Monitoring contractility in cardiac tissue with cellular resolution using biointegrated microlasers
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The contractility of cardiac cells is a key parameter that describes the biomechanical characteristics of the beating heart, but functional monitoring of three-dimensional cardiac tissue with single-cell resolution remains a major challenge. Here, we introduce microscopic whispering-gallery-mode lasers into cardiac cells to realize all-optical recording of transient cardiac contraction profiles with cellular resolution. The brilliant emission and high spectral sensitivity of microlasers to local changes in refractive index enable long-term tracking of individual cardiac cells, monitoring of drug administration, accurate measurements of organ-scale contractility in live zebrafish, and robust contractility sensing through hundreds of micrometres of rat heart tissue. Our study reveals changes in sarcomeric protein density as an underlying factor to cardiac contraction. More broadly, the use of novel micro- and nanoscopic lasers as non-invasive, biointegrated optical sensors brings new opportunities to monitor a wide range of physiological parameters with cellular resolution.
Schubert , M , Woolfson , L , Barnard , I R M , Dorward , A , Casement , B , Morton , A , Robertson , G B , Appleton , P L , Miles , G B , Tucker , C S , Pitt , S J & Gather , M C 2020 , ' Monitoring contractility in cardiac tissue with cellular resolution using biointegrated microlasers ' , Nature Photonics , vol. 14 , no. 7 , pp. 452–458 . https://doi.org/10.1038/s41566-020-0631-z
Copyright © 2020 The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer Nature Limited 2020. This work has been made available online in accordance with publisher policies or with permission. Permission for further reuse of this content should be sought from the publisher or the rights holder. This is the author created accepted manuscript following peer review and may differ slightly from the final published version. The final published version of this work is available at https://doi.org/10.1038/s41566-020-0631-z
DescriptionFunding: This research was financially supported by the European Research Council under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 Framework Programme (FP/2014-2020)/ERC grant agreement no. 640012 (ABLASE), by EPSRC (grant no. EP/P030017/1) and by the RS Macdonald Charitable Trust. S.J.P. acknowledges funding by the Royal Society of Edinburgh (Biomedical Fellowship) and the British Heart Foundation (grant no. FS/17/9/32676). S.J.P. and G.B.R. acknowledge support from The Wellcome Trust Institutional Strategic Support Fund to the University of St Andrews (grant no. 204821/Z/16/A). M.S. acknowledges funding by the European Commission (Marie Skłodowska-Curie Individual Fellowship, 659213) and the Royal Society (Dorothy Hodgkin Fellowship, DH160102; grant no. RGF\R1\180070).
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