Dielectrophoresis and electrorotation of neurospora slime and murine myeloma cells

Dielectrophoresis and electrorotation are commonly used to measure dielectric properties and membrane electrical parameters of biological cells. We have derived quantitative relationships for several critical points, defined in Fig. A 1, which characterize the dielectrophoretic spectrum and the electrorotational spectrum of a cell, based on the single-shell model (Pauly, H., and H.P. Schwan. 1959. Z. Naturforsch. 14b:125-131; Sauer, F.A. 1985. Interactions between Electromagnetic Field and Cells. A. Chiabrera, C. Nicolini, and H.P. Schwan, editors. Plenum Publishing Corp., New York. 181-202). To test these equations and to obtain membrane electrical parameters, a technique which allowed simultaneous measurements of the dielectrophoresis and the electrorotation of single cells in the same chamber, was developed and applied to the study of Neurospora slime and the Myeloma Tib9 cell line. Membrane electrical parameters were determined by the dependence of the first critical frequency of dielectrophoresis (f(ct1)) and the first characteristic frequency of electrorotation (f(c1)) on the conductivity of the suspending medium. Membrane conductances of Neurospora slime and Myeloma also were found to be 500 and 380 S m-2, respectively. Several observations indicate that these cells are more complex than that described by the single-shell model. First, the membrane capacities from f(ct1) (0.81 X 10-2 and 1.55 X 10-2 F m-2 for neurospora slime and Myeloma, respectively) were at least twice those derived from f(c1). Second, the electrorotation spectrum of Myeloma cells deviated from the single-shell like behavior. These discrepancies could be eliminated by adapting a three-shell model (Furhr, G., J. Gimsa, and R. Glaser. 1985. Stud. Biophys. 108:149-164). Apparently, there was more than one membrane relaxation process which could influence the lower frequency region of the β-dispersion. f(ct1) of Myeloma in a medium of given external conductivity were found to be similar for most cells, but for some a dramatically increased f(ct1) was recorded. Model analysis suggested that a decrease in the cytoplasmatic conductivity due to a drastic ion loss in a cell could cause this increase in f(ct1). Model analysis also suggested that the electrorotation spectrum in the counter-field rotation range and f(c1) would be more sensitive to conductivity changes of the cytoplasmic fluid and to the influence of internal membranes than would f(ct1), although the latter would be sensitive to changes in capacitance of the cytoplasmic membranes.

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Gimsa, J; Marszalek, P; Loewe, U; Tsong, TY

Published Date

  • 1991

Published In

  • Biophysical Journal

Volume / Issue

  • 60 / 4

Start / End Page

  • 749 - 760

Citation Source

  • SciVal