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Opportunity at National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)

Coherent Raman Imaging of Biomineralization Processes in Stem Cells

Location

Material Measurement Laboratory, Biosystems and Biomaterials Division

RO# Location
50.64.41.B7848 Gaithersburg, MD

Please note: This Agency only participates in the February and August reviews.

Advisers

Name E-mail Phone
Camp, Charles Henry charles.camp@nist.gov 301.975.4631
Lee, Young Jong youngjong.lee@nist.gov 301.975.6832
Lin-Gibson, Sheng slgibson@nist.gov 301.975.6765

Description

Our goal is to develop methods for label-free chemical imaging and characterization of the biomineralization process. Biomineralization, a process that begins at the subcellular level, organizes to form complex hierarchical structures, eventually forming hard tissues, such as bone and teeth. Biomineralization in vitro is commonly used as a marker to identify stem cell populations, however, there is a lack of understanding regarding the in vitro mineralization process and its relevance to in vivo bone forming capability. Our advanced chemical imaging technique, broadband coherent anti-Stokes Raman scattering (CARS) microscopy, combined with 3D confocal imaging is expected to offer new insights into the mechanisms of cell mediated biomineralization processes. The research opportunity aims to acquire chemical images of key functional markers (e.g., hydroxyapatite, amorphous calcium phosphate, collagen) in cells and tissues without labeling and staining and identify key mineralization features that are relevant for identifying potent stem cell populations. Both stem cells and terminally differentiated cells will be used as model systems. Sensitivity and specificity of the functional markers, as well as other subcellular organelles (e.g., nucleus, mitochondria, cytoskeletons) will be improved through instrumentation optimization and development of robust data analysis procedures.

 

Keywords:
Biomineralization; CARS microscopy; Bioimaging; Stem cells; Osteoblast; Bone; Raman; Tissue engineering;

Eligibility

Citizenship:  Open to U.S. citizens
Level:  Open to Postdoctoral applicants
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