Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile
Castillo M., Ebensperger R., Wirtz D., WalczaK M., Hurtado D. and Celedón A. (2014)

Local mechanical response of cells to the controlled rotation of magnetic nanorods

Revista : Journal of Biomedical Materials Research Part B: Applied Biomaterials
Volumen : 102
Número : 8
Páginas : 1779-1785
Tipo de publicación : ISI Ir a publicación


The mechanical response of the cytoplasm was investigated by the intracellular implantation of magnetic nanorods and exposure to low-frequency rotatory magnetic fields. Nanorods (Pt-Ni, ∼200 nm diameter) fabricated by electrodeposition in templates of porous alumina with lengths of approximately 2 and 5 µm were inserted into NIH/3T3 fibroblasts and manipulated with a rotational magnetic field. Nanorod rotation was observed only for torques greater than 3.0 × 10−16 Nm, suggesting a Bingham-type behavior of the cytoplasm. Higher torques produced considerable deformation of the intracellular material. The cell nucleus and cell membrane were significantly deformed by nanorods actuated by 4.5 × 10−15 Nm torques. Our results demonstrate that nanorods under magnetic fields are an effective tool to mechanically probe the intracellular environment. We envision that our findings may contribute to the noninvasive and direct mechanical characterization of the cytoplasm