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AFM / AFS - Single molecule Atomic Force Spectroscope


AFM - Atomic Force Microscope

AFS - Single molecule Atomic Force Spectroscope

This unique Atomic-Force-Spectroscope (AFS) , based on the Atomic Force Microscope Technology (AFM) was specially designed for studying single proteins placed under a calibrated mechanical load.
The upside down design, where the cantilever, laser and sensor is fixed while the substrate with attached protein is moved by a ultra-precise linear Piezo, enables us to get a feedback response time better than 1ms and a position accuracy better than 1nm.
The software is based on IGOR and enables the operator to run automatic experiments over the day without putting hands on.
The AFS can be operated in two modes:
- force extension (constant velocity)
- force clamp (constant force)
In force clamp mode the operator can design his own force protocol to measure protein folding, unfolding and protein chemical reactions.
The software includes routines that unambiguously identify the mechanical fingerprints of the protein being studied, and thus is able to recognize and store data automatically.
A tuneable Proportional-Integral-Differential system (PID) enables the operator to adjust the parameter for the Piezo, cantilever and probe to get the best feedback time for each individual experiment.
The AFS comes as a complete workstation, incl. vibration damping table, PC Monitor and software.
For further information please visit the web page of Professor Julio Fernandez, in which collaboration this system was designed.
http://fernandezlab.biology.columbia.edu

Highlights

- feedback time less than 1ms under optimal conditions (Typical 1-2ms)
- sub-nanometer resolution (Piezo noise)
- fully automatically
- detects and saves sawtooth pattern fingerprints automatically
- force clamp (constant force) and force extension (constant velocity) mode
- Protein folding and unfolding
- Free designable force protocol (for force, time and ramp function)
- Powerful analysis software
- User friendly software interface

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