Researchers at the Indian Institute of Technology Mandi in collaboration with the University of Cincinnati, USA, has developed an efficient method to study the internal structure and functions of an important component of living cells. The researchers have used metal nanoclusters in a method called Structured Illumination Microscopy to observe the nanodimensional features and functions of lysosomes and their interactions with another important cell organelle, mitochondria.
The results of this work have been published in the prestigious journal – American Chemical Society Materials Letters, in a paper co-authored by Prof. Chayan K. Nandi, School of Basic Sciences, IIT Mandi and his research scholar Mr. Aditya Yadav from IIT Mandi, along with Dr. Kangqiang Qiu, Dr. Zhiqi Tian, Dr. Ziyuan Guo, Dr. Donglu Shi, and Dr. Jiajie Diao from the University of Cincinnati. USA.
A lysosome is an essential component of living cells. It is involved in various cell processes and interacts with other cell components like the mitochondria. Lysosomes destroy invading viruses and bacteria. If the cell is damaged beyond repair, lysosomes can help it self-destruct, thereby earning the moniker “suicide bag”. Lysosomal dysfunction can cause a wide range of diseases including neurodegenerative disorders, immune system disorders, cancer, etc. Therefore, the analysis and tracking of lysosomes structure and function can help predict risks for certain diseases and also guide the development of new pharmaceuticals for those diseases.