Rotation of single bacterial cells relative to the optical axis using optical tweezers Academic Article uri icon


  • Using a single-beam, oscillating optical tweezers, we demonstrate trapping and rotation of rod-shaped bacterial cells with respect to the optical axis. The angle of rotation, θ, is determined by the amplitude of the oscillation. It is shown that θ can be measured from the longitudinal cell intensity profiles in the corresponding phase-contrast images. The technique allows viewing the cell from different perspectives and can provide a useful tool in fluorescence microscopy for the analysis of three-dimensional subcellular structures.

publication date

  • January 1, 2011