Quantitative Live Single-cell Mass Spectrometry with Spatial Evaluation by Three-Dimensional Holographic and Tomographic Laser Microscopy

Anal Sci. 2016;32(2):125-7. doi: 10.2116/analsci.32.125.


The locations and volumes of the contents of a single HepG2 cell were visualized under three-dimensional (3D) holographic and tomographic (HT) laser microscopy, colored by refractive index, not staining. After trapping the specific area of a target cell in a nanospray tip, quantification was performed by live single-cell mass spectrometry. Comparison of the HepG2 cells' before and after 3D-HT images allowed the inference of the precise volume and original location of the trapped cell contents. The total amount of a trapped molecule was estimated. The images also revealed morphological changes in the cell structure caused by the manipulation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Cytosol / metabolism
  • Hep G2 Cells
  • Holography / methods*
  • Humans
  • Image Processing, Computer-Assisted
  • Imaging, Three-Dimensional / methods*
  • Mass Spectrometry / methods*
  • Microscopy, Confocal / methods*
  • Refractometry
  • Single-Cell Analysis / methods*
  • Tomography / methods*