Preprint Article Version 1 Preserved in Portico This version is not peer-reviewed

Dynamic Effective Elasticity of Melanoma Cells Under Shear and Elongational Flow Confirms Estimation From Force Spectroscopy

Version 1 : Received: 13 September 2021 / Approved: 13 September 2021 / Online: 13 September 2021 (14:14:47 CEST)

How to cite: Jötten, A.M.; Neidinger, S.; Tietze, J.K.; Welzel, J.; Westerhausen, C. Dynamic Effective Elasticity of Melanoma Cells Under Shear and Elongational Flow Confirms Estimation From Force Spectroscopy. Preprints 2021, 2021090214 (doi: 10.20944/preprints202109.0214.v1). Jötten, A.M.; Neidinger, S.; Tietze, J.K.; Welzel, J.; Westerhausen, C. Dynamic Effective Elasticity of Melanoma Cells Under Shear and Elongational Flow Confirms Estimation From Force Spectroscopy. Preprints 2021, 2021090214 (doi: 10.20944/preprints202109.0214.v1).

Abstract

The detection and enrichment of circulating melanoma cells is a challenge as the cells are very heterogeneous in terms of their biomechanical properties and surface markers. In addition, there is a lack of valid and reliable biomarkers that predict progress and therapeutic response. We here analyzed the elasticity of A375 melanoma cells applying force spectroscopy and a microfluidic method. To identify and eventually separate circulating tumor cells, it is crucial to precisely know their physical properties. First, we used standard AFM force spectroscopy, where the elasticity of the cells is calculated from indentation with a pyramidal tip. To extend the limits of measurement with a tip, we then used cantilevers without a tip to press on the cells over a large area. The resulting Young’s moduli are slightly lower and vary less without tip presumably because of the inhomogeneity of the cells. Finally, we implemented our microfluidic method. We measured single cell elasticity by analyzing its deformation in high-speed micrographs while passing a stenosis. Combining the force field and the change in shape provides the basis for a stress strain diagram. The results from microfluidic deformation analysis were in accordance with the results from force spectroscopy. The microfluidic method provides advantages over conventional methods, since it is less invasive and less likely to harm the cell during the measurement, and the whole cell is measured as one entity without contact to a stiff substrate, while force spectroscopy is limited to the contact area of the tip, and in some cases dependent of the cell substrate interaction. Consequently, microfluidic deformation analysis allows to predict the overall elastic behavior of the whole inhomogeneous cell in three-dimensional force fields. This method may contribute to improve the detection of circulation melanoma cells in the clinical practice.

Keywords

melanoma cells; elasticity; AFM; microfludics; force spectroscopy

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