Graphene Enclosure of Chemically Fixed Mammalian Cells for Liquid-Phase Electron Microscopy

Patricia Blach, Sercan Keskin, Niels de Jonge
A protocol is described for investigating the human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2) in the intact plasma membrane of breast cancer cells using scanning transmission electron microscopy (STEM). Cells of the mammalian breast cancer cell line SKBR3 were grown on silicon microchips with silicon nitride (SiN) windows. Cells were chemically fixed, and HER2 proteins were labeled with quantum dot nanoparticles (QDs), using a two-step biotin-streptavidin binding protocol. The cells were coated
more » ... with multilayer graphene to maintain a hydrated state, and to protect them from electron beam damage during STEM. To examine the stability of the samples under electron beam irradiation, a dose series experiment was performed. Graphene-coated and non-coated samples were compared. Beam induced damage, in the form of bright artifacts, appeared for some non-coated samples at increased electron dose D, while no artifacts appeared on coated samples.
doi:10.34657/4663 fatcat:b3vuz5zcgrdxzblvuseimj2jga