Image courtesy of Nano Letters


The intracellular uptake of 30 nm diameter gold nanoparticles (Au-NPs) was studied at the nanoscale in pristine eukaryotic cells. Live COS-7 cells were maintained in a microfluidic chamber and imaged using scanning transmission electron microscopy. A quantitative image analysis showed that Au-NPs bound to the membranes of vesicles, possibly lysosomes, and occupied 67% of the available surface area. The vesicles accumulated to form a micrometer-sized cluster after 24 h of incubation. Two clusters were analyzed and found to consist of 117 ± 9 and 164 ± 4 NP-filled vesicles.

Impact Statement

The uptake of 30 nm diameter gold nanoparticles into intracellular vesicles was imaged in situ with STEM using Poseidon. The images were quantitatively analyzed to determine the particle number, loading percentage, and clustering behavior after 24 hours.
Keywords: Cells; Cellular Labeling; Nanoparticles; Uptake