Temperature of Individual Cells

  • Author: ChemistryViews
  • Published: 30 August 2011
  • Copyright: Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim
  • Source / Publisher: 242nd ACS National Meeting
thumbnail image: Temperature of Individual Cells

The role of temperature inside cells is poorly understood, although temperature is one of the most important physical factors that can influence a chemical reaction.

Haw Yang, Princeton University, and Liwei Lin, University California, Berkeley, both USA, have developed quantum dots of cadmium and selenium that are small enough to fit inside individual cells. The quantum dots emit different wavelengths of light corresponding to different temperatures. This allows monitoring of localized and transient temperatures inside living cells upon external chemical and mechanical stresses.

Individual mammilian cells were shown to have localized areas of increased or reduced temperature, rather than a constant body temperature. This discovery could lead to broad understanding of biological mechanisms in energy generation/conversion and health-related metabolism processes.

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