Fine surface images that reflect cytoskeletal structures in cultured glial cells by atomic force microscopy

Yukako Yamane, Dai Hatakeyama, Takuro Tojima, Kazushige Kawabata, Tatsuo Ushiki, Shigeaki Ogura, Kazuhiro Abe, Etsuro Ito*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


The morphology of cultured glial cells was examined using a combination of atomic force microscopy (AFM) and immunofluorescence staining for cytoskeletons. The meshwork of type-1 astrocytes consisted of thick longitudinal and thin lateral lines on the cell surfaces observed by AFM; the former lines were confirmed to be reflections of actin filaments. The astrocytic processes of type-2 astrocytes were observed to be rugged on AFM. These structures were mainly affected by microtubules. Immunofluorescence imaging of microglia revealed that actin filaments and microtubules were arranged radially and wavily along the cell edge, respectively. AFM could detect these radial and wavy structures clearly. These results show that AFM can provide information on the cytoskeletons of glial cells, indicating that AFM is a useful tool for the morphological characterization of cells.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3849-3854
Number of pages6
JournalJapanese Journal of Applied Physics, Part 1: Regular Papers and Short Notes and Review Papers
Issue number6 SUPPL. B
Publication statusPublished - 1998 Jun
Externally publishedYes


  • Actin filament
  • Astrocyte
  • Cytoskeleton
  • Immunofluorescence staining
  • Microglia
  • Microtubule
  • Rat brain

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Engineering(all)
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)


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