Paolo Annibale, Martin Lohse, Christof Schütte
Horst-Holger Boltz (ZIB)
01.03.2020 – 31.12.2020
Zuse Institut Berlin, Max-Delbrück-Center
When imaged under a microscope, fluorescently labeled receptor molecules on the plasma membrane of the cell appear as diffraction limited spots. These molecules and the corresponding microscopic spots diffuse and can interact depending on their relative affinity. Collisions among them may result either in random overlaps or in constructive interaction and therefore overlap of varying duration. While it is experimentally possible to extract overlap times with relative ease, modeling of these processes based on the underlying reaction-diffusion laws has received considerably less attention and would represent an important tool to characterize and assess molecular interactions at the cell surface.
Annibale, P., Lohse, M.J. Spatial heterogeneity in molecular brightness. Nat Methods 17, 273–275 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41592-020-0732-0
Statistical analysis of the distribution of these times together with suitable modeling (including generation of artificial data as a point of comparison) and analytics (there is a related first-passage problem offering valuable insight) are then used to extract some key parameters of the interaction between the two particles.
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