Abstract

We demonstrate how optical tweezers can be incorporated into a multiphoton microscope to achieve three-dimensional imaging of trapped cells. The optical tweezers, formed by a cw 1064 nm Nd:YVO4 laser, were used to trap live yeast cells in suspension while the 4′,6-diamidino-2-phenylindole-stained nucleus was imaged in three dimensions by use of a pulsed femtosecond laser. The trapped cell was moved in the axial direction by changing the position of an external lens, which was used to control the divergence of the trapping laser beam. This gives us a simple method to use optical tweezers in the laser scanning of confocal and multiphoton microscopes. It is further shown that the same femtosecond laser as used for the multiphoton imaging could also be used as laser scissors, allowing us to drill holes in the membrane of trapped spermatozoa.

© 2004 Optical Society of America

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