Special Section on Laser Applications in Life Sciences

Time- and spectrally resolved characteristics of flavin fluorescence in U87MG cancer cells in culture

[+] Author Affiliations
Julia Horilova

International Laser Centre, Department of Biophotonics, Ilkovicova 3, Bratislava 841 04, Slovakia

Pavol Jozef Safarik University, Department of Biophysics, Faculty of Science, Jesenna 5, Kosice 040 01, Slovakia

Beata Cunderlikova

International Laser Centre, Department of Biophotonics, Ilkovicova 3, Bratislava 841 04, Slovakia

Comenius University, Institute of Medical Physics, Biophysics, Informatics and Telemedicine, Faculty of Medicine, Sasinkova 2, Bratislava 813 72, Slovakia

Alzbeta Marcek Chorvatova

International Laser Centre, Department of Biophotonics, Ilkovicova 3, Bratislava 841 04, Slovakia

University of Ss. Cyril and Methodius, Department of Biotechnology, Faculty of Natural Sciences, Nám. J. Herdu 2, Trnava 917 01, Slovakia

J. Biomed. Opt. 20(5), 051017 (Dec 18, 2014). doi:10.1117/1.JBO.20.5.051017
History: Received August 27, 2014; Accepted November 11, 2014
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Abstract.  Early detection of cancer is crucial for the successful diagnostics of its presence and its subsequent treatment. To improve cancer detection, we tested the progressive multimodal optical imaging of U87MG cells in culture. A combination of steady-state spectroscopic methods with the time-resolved approach provides a new insight into the native metabolism when focused on endogenous tissue fluorescence. In this contribution, we evaluated the metabolic state of living U87MG cancer cells in culture by means of endogenous flavin fluorescence. Confocal microscopy and time-resolved fluorescence imaging were employed to gather spectrally and time-resolved images of the flavin fluorescence. We observed that flavin fluorescence in U87MG cells was predominantly localized outside the cell nucleus in mitochondria, while exhibiting a spectral maximum under 500 nm and fluorescence lifetimes under 1.4 ns, suggesting the presence of bound flavins. In some cells, flavin fluorescence was also detected inside the cell nuclei in the nucleoli, exhibiting longer fluorescence lifetimes and a red-shifted spectral maximum, pointing to the presence of free flavin. Extra-nuclear flavin fluorescence was diminished by 2-deoxyglucose, but failed to increase with 2,4-dinitrophenol, the uncoupler of oxidative phosphorylation, indicating that the cells use glycolysis, rather than oxidative phosphorylation for functioning. These gathered data are the first step toward monitoring the metabolic state of U87MG cancer cells.

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© 2015 Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers

Topics

Luminescence ; Cancer

Citation

Julia Horilova ; Beata Cunderlikova and Alzbeta Marcek Chorvatova
"Time- and spectrally resolved characteristics of flavin fluorescence in U87MG cancer cells in culture", J. Biomed. Opt. 20(5), 051017 (Dec 18, 2014). ; http://dx.doi.org/10.1117/1.JBO.20.5.051017


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