Research ArticleCELL BIOLOGY

Single yeast cell nanomotions correlate with cellular activity

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Science Advances  24 Jun 2020:
Vol. 6, no. 26, eaba3139
DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.aba3139


Living single yeast cells show a specific cellular motion at the nanometer scale with a magnitude that is proportional to the cellular activity of the cell. We characterized this cellular nanomotion pattern of nonattached single yeast cells using classical optical microscopy. The distribution of the cellular displacements over a short time period is distinct from random motion. The range and shape of such nanomotion displacement distributions change substantially according to the metabolic state of the cell. The analysis of the nanomotion frequency pattern demonstrated that single living yeast cells oscillate at relatively low frequencies of around 2 hertz. The simplicity of the technique should open the way to numerous applications among which antifungal susceptibility tests seem the most straightforward.

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