Plasma cleaning is essential to the preparation of fluorescence microscopy samples. Plasma removes organic contamination and introduces polar groups to glass or quartz slide surfaces. As a result, plasma removes fluorescent impurities that would otherwise appear as confounding artifacts. Additionally, plasma treatment enhances the deposition of surface coatings that can be used to tether single molecules to the slide surfaces. Bovine serum albumin (BSA) or polyethylene glycol (PEG) are commonly uses to enable single molecular studies following plasma treatment.
Note that plasma cleaning can remove organic and biological contaminants that may contribute to background fluorescence in fluorescence microscopy. Air or O2 plasma cleaning would not be able to remove inorganic components that contribute to background fluorescence.
Relevant Articles from Harrick Plasma Users
Förster Resonance Energy Transfer (FRET) Microscopy
Abbondanzieri EA, Bokinsky G, Rausch JW, Zhang JX, Le Grice SFJ, and Zhuang X. “Dynamic binding orientations direct activity of HIV reverse transcriptase.”. Nature 2008 453: 184 — 189 10.1038/nature06941
Kjaergaard M, Dear AJ, Kundel F, Qamar S, Meisl G, Knowles TP, and Klenerman D. “Oligomer diversity during the aggregation of the repeat-region of tau”. ACS Chem. Neurosci. 2018 10.1021/acschemneuro.8b00250 (Quartz Slide)
Rakers V, Cadinu P, Edel JB, and Vilar R. “Development of microfluidic platforms for the synthesis of metal complexes and evaluation of their DNA affinity using online FRET melting assays”. Chem. Sci. 2018 9: 3459-3469 10.1039/C8SC00528A (Quartz Tubing)
Varadarajan A, Oswald F, and Bollen YJM. “Single-Molecule Imaging of Escherichia coli Transmembrane Proteins”. Methods Mol. Biol. 2018 1665: 135-144 10.1007/978-1-4939-7271-5_7
Total Internal Reflection Fluorescence (TIRF) Microscopy
Kundel F, Hong L, Falcon B, McEwan WA, Michaels TCT, Meisl G, Esteras N, Abramov AY, Knowles TJP, Goedert M, and Klenerman D. “Measurement of Tau Filament Fragmentation Provides Insights into Prion-like Spreading”. ACS Chem. Neurosci. 2018 9: 1276-1282 10.1021/acschemneuro.8b00094 (Glass Slide)
Qamar S, Wang G, Randle SJ, Ruggeri FS, Varela JA, Lin JQ, Phillips EC, Miyashita A, Williams D, Ströhl F, Meadows W, Ferry R, Dardov VJ, Tartaglia GG, Farrer LA, Schierle GSK, Kaminski CF, Holt CE, Fraser PE, Schmitt-Ulms G, Klenerman D, Knowles T, Vendruscolo M, and George-Hyslop PS. “FUS Phase Separation Is Modulated by a Molecular Chaperone and Methylation of Arginine Cation-φ Interactions”. Cell 2018 173: 720-734.e15 10.1016/j.cell.2018.03.056
Janeczek AA, Scarpa E, Horrocks MH, Tare RS, Rowland CA, Jenner D, Newman TA, Oreffo RO, Lee SF, and Evans ND. “PEGylated liposomes associate with Wnt3A protein and expand putative stem cells in human bone marrow populations”. Nanomedicine 2017 12: 845-863 10.2217/nnm-2016-0386