Imaging material properties of biological samples with a force feedback microscope


  • This article is published in Journal of Molecular Recognition as part of the virtual Special Issue ‘AFM BioMed Shanghai 2013, edited by Jun Hu, SINAP, China and Pierre Parot and Jean-Luc Pellequer, CEA, France’.


Mechanical properties of biological samples have been imaged with a force feedback microscope. Force, force gradient, and dissipation are measured simultaneously and quantitatively, merely knowing the atomic force microscopy cantilever spring constant. Our first results demonstrate that this robust method provides quantitative high resolution force measurements of the interaction. The small oscillation imposed on the cantilever and the small value of its stiffness result in vibrational energies much smaller than the thermal energy, reducing interaction with the sample to a minimum. We show that the observed mechanical properties of the sample depend on the force applied by the tip and consequently on the sample indentation. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.