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Analytical Techniques: Shedding Light upon Nanometer-Sized Secretory Vesicles

Journal article
Authors Elias Ranjbari
Soodabeh Majdi
Andrew G Ewing
Published in Trends in Chemistry
Volume 1
Issue 4
Pages 440-451
ISSN 2589-5974
Publication year 2019
Published at Department of Chemistry and Molecular Biology
Pages 440-451
Language en
Keywords electrochemical cytometry, electron microscopy, mass spectrometry, STED, TEM, vesicles
Subject categories Chemical Sciences


Vesicles, small synaptic and large dense core, are the main organelles responsible for cell-to-cell communication. Analysis of nanometer-sized vesicles and accurate assessment of their physiology are major analytical challenges. This review briefly discusses the achievements made in these areas using some of the strongest techniques comprising transmission electron microscopy, stimulated emission depletion microscopy, nanoscale secondary-ion mass spectrometry, and electrochemical cytometry. These techniques provide high spatial and temporal resolution to precisely delve into the structure of these subcellular organelles and shed light on the processes involved in cell signaling. Correlating results of these techniques has furthered our understanding of the relationship between vesicle structure and function. Both the methods and their use in evaluating function are discussed. © 2019 Elsevier Inc.

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