Diolistics: incorporating fluorescent dyes into biological samples using a gene gun.: "Publication Date: 2007 Oct 16 PMID: 17945370
Authors: O'Brien, J. A. - Lummis, S. C.
Journal: Trends Biotechnol
The hand-held gene gun provides a rapid and efficient method of incorporating fluorescent dyes into cells, a technique that is becoming known as diolistics. Transporting fluorescent dyes into cells has, in the past, used predominantly injection or chemical methods. The use of the gene gun, combined with the new generation of fluorescent dyes, circumvents some of the problems of using these methods and also enables the study of cells that have proved difficult traditionally to transfect (e.g. those deep in tissues and/or terminally differentiated); in addition, the use of ion- or metabolite-sensitive dyes provides a route to study cellular mechanisms. Diolistics is also ideal for loading cells with optical nanosensors - nanometre-sized sensors linked to fluorescent probes. Here, we discuss the theoretical considerations of using diolistics, the advantages compared with other methods of inserting dyes into cells and the current uses of the technique, with particular consideration of nanosensors.