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Journal of Biomedical Optics

No effect of femtosecond laser pulses on M13, E. coli, DNA, or protein
Author(s): Jeffrey C. Wigle; Eric A. Holwitt; Larry E. Estlack; Gary D. Noojin; Katharine E. Saunders; Vladislav V. Yakovlev; Benjamin A. Rockwell
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Paper Abstract

Data showing what appears to be nonthermal inactivation of M13 bacteriophage (M13), Tobacco mosaic virus, Escherichia coli (E. coli), and Jurkatt T-cells following exposure to 80-fs pulses of laser radiation have been published. Interest in the mechanism led to attempts to reproduce the results for M13 and E. coli. Bacteriophage plaque-forming and bacteria colony-forming assays showed no inactivation of the microorganisms; therefore, model systems were used to see what, if any, damage might be occurring to biologically important molecules. Purified plasmid DNA (pUC19) and bovine serum albumin were exposed to and analyzed by agarose gel electrophoresis (AGE) and polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (PAGE), respectively, and no effect was found. DNA and coat proteins extracted from laser-exposed M13 and analyzed by AGE or PAGE found no effect. Raman scattering by M13 in phosphate buffered saline was measured to determine if there was any physical interaction between M13 and femtosecond laser pulses, and none was found. Positive controls for the endpoints measured produced the expected results with the relevant assays. Using the published methods, we were unable to reproduce the inactivation results or to show any interaction between ultrashort laser pulses and buffer/water, DNA, protein, M13 bacteriophage, or E. coli.

Paper Details

Date Published: 27 January 2014
PDF: 13 pages
J. Biomed. Opt. 19(1) 015008 doi: 10.1117/1.JBO.19.1.015008
Published in: Journal of Biomedical Optics Volume 19, Issue 1
Show Author Affiliations
Jeffrey C. Wigle, Air Force Research Lab. (United States)
Eric A. Holwitt, Air Force Research Lab. (United States)
Larry E. Estlack, Conceptual MindWorks Inc. (United States)
Gary D. Noojin, TASC, Inc. (United States)
Katharine E. Saunders, Air Force Research Lab. (United States)
Vladislav V. Yakovlev, Univ. of Wisconsin-Milwaukee (United States)
Benjamin A. Rockwell, Air Force Research Lab. (United States)

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