Quantum Sensing of Free Radical Generation in Mitochondria of Single Heart Muscle Cells during Hypoxia and Reoxygenation

Siyu Fan, Han Gao, Yue Zhang, Linyan Nie, Raquel Bártolo, Reinier Bron, Hélder A. Santos, Romana Schirhagl*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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Abstract

Cells are damaged during hypoxia (blood supply deprivation) and reoxygenation (oxygen return). This damage occurs in conditions such as cardiovascular diseases, cancer, and organ transplantation, potentially harming the tissue and organs. The role of free radicals in cellular metabolic reprogramming under hypoxia is under debate, but their measurement is challenging due to their short lifespan and limited diffusion range. In this study, we employed a quantum sensing technique to measure the real-time production of free radicals at the subcellular level. We utilize fluorescent nanodiamonds (FNDs) that exhibit changes in their optical properties based on the surrounding magnetic noise. This way, we were able to detect the presence of free radicals. To specifically monitor radical generation near mitochondria, we coated the FNDs with an antibody targeting voltage-dependent anion channel 2 (anti-VDAC2), which is located in the outer membrane of mitochondria. We observed a significant increase in the radical load on the mitochondrial membrane when cells were exposed to hypoxia. Subsequently, during reoxygenation, the levels of radicals gradually decreased back to the normoxia state. Overall, by applying a quantum sensing technique, the connections among hypoxia, free radicals, and the cellular redox status has been revealed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2982–2991
Number of pages10
JournalAcs Nano
Volume18
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 30-Jan-2024

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