Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors
Heifer International



Home > Press > MEMS nanoinjector for genetic modification of cells: Researchers from Nexus Spine LLC and Brigham Young University have developed new, high-tech device for transferring DNA into cells

This SEM (scanning electron microscope) image shows the nanoinjector next to a latex bead the same size as an egg cell. You can see the size of the nanoinjector and its lance compared to a cell.

Credit: Brian Jensen/BYU
This SEM (scanning electron microscope) image shows the nanoinjector next to a latex bead the same size as an egg cell. You can see the size of the nanoinjector and its lance compared to a cell.

Credit: Brian Jensen/BYU

Abstract:
The ability to transfer a gene or DNA sequence from one animal into the genome of another plays a critical role in a wide range of medical research—including cancer, Alzheimer's disease, and diabetes.

MEMS nanoinjector for genetic modification of cells: Researchers from Nexus Spine LLC and Brigham Young University have developed new, high-tech device for transferring DNA into cells

Washington, DC | Posted on May 13th, 2014

But the traditional method of transferring genetic material into a new cell, called "microinjection," has a serious downside. It involves using a small glass pipette to pump a solution containing DNA into the nucleus of an egg cell, but the extra fluid can cause the cell to swell and destroy it—resulting in a 25 to 40 percent cell death rate.

Now, thanks to the work of researchers Brigham Young University, there's a way to avoid cell death when introducing DNA into egg cells. In Review of Scientific Instruments, the team describes its microelectromechanical system (MEMS) nanoinjector, which was designed to inject DNA into mouse zygotes (single-cell embryos consisting of a fertilized egg).

"Essentially, we use electrical forces to attract and repel DNA—allowing injections to occur with a tiny, electrically conductive lance," explained Brian Jensen, associate professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Brigham Young University. "DNA is attracted to the outside of the lance using positive voltage, and then the lance is inserted into a cell."

The MEMS nanoinjector's lance is incredibly small and no extra fluid is used with this technique, so cells undergo much less stress compared to the traditional microinjection process.

This ability to inject DNA into cells without causing cell death leads to "more efficient injections, which in turn reduces the cost to create a transgenic animal," according to Jensen.

One of the team's most significant findings is that it's possible to use the electrical forces to get DNA into the nucleus of the cell—without having to carefully aim the lance into the pronucleus (the cellular structure containing the cell's DNA). "This may enable future automation of the injections, without requiring manual injection," Jensen says.

It may also mean that injections can be performed in animals with cloudy or opaque embryos. "Such animals, including many interesting larger ones like pigs, would be attractive for a variety of transgenic technologies," said Jensen. "We believe nanoinjection may open new fields of discovery in these animals."

As a next step, Jensen and colleagues are performing injections into cells in a cell culture using an array of lances that can inject hundreds of thousands of cells at once. "We expect the lance array may enable gene therapy using a culture of a patient's own cells," he noted.

####

About American Institute of Physics
The journal Review of Scientific Instruments, which is produced by AIP Publishing, presents innovation in instrumentation and methods across disciplines.

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Jason Socrates Bardi

240-535-4954

Copyright © American Institute of Physics

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related Links

The article "A Self-Reconfiguring Metamorphic Nanoinjector for Injection into Mouse Zygotes" by Quentin T. Aten, Brian D. Jensen, Sandra H. Burnett, and Larry L. Howell will be published in the journal Review of Scientific Instruments on Tuesday, May 13, 2014 (DOI: 10.1063/1.4872077). After that date, it will be available at:

Related News Press

News and information

Optimized method to detect high-dimensional entanglement December 3rd, 2021

Scientists edge closer to probe that would inspect atherosclerotic plaques by forcing molecules to sound their presence December 3rd, 2021

Two-dimensional bipolar magnetic semiconductors with high Curie-temperature and electrically controllable spin polarization realized in exfoliated Cr(pyrazine)2 monolayers December 3rd, 2021

Review on the femtosecond laser precision micro/nano-engineering December 3rd, 2021

Nanomedicine

Scientists edge closer to probe that would inspect atherosclerotic plaques by forcing molecules to sound their presence December 3rd, 2021

Immune system-stimulating nanoparticle could lead to more powerful vaccines: The potent new adjuvant could be used to help make vaccines against HIV and other infectious diseases December 3rd, 2021

Scientists develop promising vaccine method against recurrent UTI November 19th, 2021

Cancer cells use ‘tiny tentacles’ to suppress the immune system: With the power of nanotechnology, investigators have discovered that cancer cells strengthen by forming nanotubes that they use to suck mitochondria out of immune cells November 19th, 2021

Discoveries

Researchers develop polyimide-mica nanocomposite film with high resistance to low earth orbit environments December 3rd, 2021

Researchers realize ultra-high precision search for exotic interactions December 3rd, 2021

Optimized method to detect high-dimensional entanglement December 3rd, 2021

Scientists edge closer to probe that would inspect atherosclerotic plaques by forcing molecules to sound their presence December 3rd, 2021

Announcements

Scientists edge closer to probe that would inspect atherosclerotic plaques by forcing molecules to sound their presence December 3rd, 2021

Two-dimensional bipolar magnetic semiconductors with high Curie-temperature and electrically controllable spin polarization realized in exfoliated Cr(pyrazine)2 monolayers December 3rd, 2021

Review on the femtosecond laser precision micro/nano-engineering December 3rd, 2021

Development of a single-process platform for the manufacture of graphene quantum dots: Precisely controls the bonding configuration of heteroatoms in graphene quantum dots through simple chemical processes. Practical application and commercialization in various fields is expected December 3rd, 2021

Interviews/Book Reviews/Essays/Reports/Podcasts/Journals/White papers/Posters

Using green tea as reducing reagent for the preparation of nanomaterials to synthesize ammonia December 3rd, 2021

Researchers develop polyimide-mica nanocomposite film with high resistance to low earth orbit environments December 3rd, 2021

Researchers realize ultra-high precision search for exotic interactions December 3rd, 2021

Development of a single-process platform for the manufacture of graphene quantum dots: Precisely controls the bonding configuration of heteroatoms in graphene quantum dots through simple chemical processes. Practical application and commercialization in various fields is expected December 3rd, 2021

Nanobiotechnology

Scientists edge closer to probe that would inspect atherosclerotic plaques by forcing molecules to sound their presence December 3rd, 2021

Immune system-stimulating nanoparticle could lead to more powerful vaccines: The potent new adjuvant could be used to help make vaccines against HIV and other infectious diseases December 3rd, 2021

Scientists develop promising vaccine method against recurrent UTI November 19th, 2021

Cancer cells use ‘tiny tentacles’ to suppress the immune system: With the power of nanotechnology, investigators have discovered that cancer cells strengthen by forming nanotubes that they use to suck mitochondria out of immune cells November 19th, 2021

Alliances/Trade associations/Partnerships/Distributorships

Fujitsu and Osaka University deepen collaborative research and development for fault-tolerant quantum computers October 1st, 2021

National 2D materials research center wins NSF funding: Boise State joins Penn State, Rice for Phase II expansion of ATOMIC center August 20th, 2021

National 2D materials research center wins NSF funding: Boise State joins Penn State, Rice for Phase II expansion of ATOMIC center August 20th, 2021

The National Space Society Joins the Progressive Policy Institute in Supporting Rapid Development of Space Solar Power: Orbiting Solar Power Stations Would Help to Save the Environment August 20th, 2021

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE




  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More











ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project