The Bruker BioScope Catalyst™ Atomic Force Microscope (AFM) system can provide high resolution (nm) topographical data of biological systems such as living cells. The instrument works in tandem with an inverted optical microscope, which is also capable of fluorescence microscopy and has a heated stage for live cell imaging.
The optical microscope allows for the quick location of regions of interest on a sample which can then be imaged at higher resolution with the scanning probe microscope. The AFM creates high-resolution images of a sample’s surface by scanning a sharp tip over the sample and measuring the changes in the tip via the deflection of a laser on the tip head. The Catalyst is also capable of overlaying optical images with the high resolution AFM images using the MIRO (Microscope Image Registration and Overlay) software package.
The AFM supports measurements in PeakForce QNM (Quantitative Nanomechanical Mapping), Quantitative Force-Volume Mapping, and Single Force Curve Imaging. All of these capabilities can be run using the ScanAsyst feature which automatically optimises imaging parameters for dried samples in air, or for samples immersed in fluid.
The highlight of the Bruker BioScope Catalyst is its proprietary PeakForce QNM imaging mode that allows for the simultaneous acquisition of multiple sample properties including topology, modulus, adhesion and deformation. The new PeakForce Capture™ feature allows for the capture and analysis of individual force curves at each pixel of the image. This makes the Bruker BioScope Catalyst AFM particularly powerful in determining the stiffness of live cells.