Scanning Microscopy


Atomic force microscope (AFM) images of intact kinetoplast DNA were obtained from samples prepared utilizing critical point drying. These images are compared with AFM images obtained using conventional methods for DNA deposition. Although the images obtained on chemically pretreated mica show more details than on unmodified mica, images obtained with critical point drying were superior. Kinetoplast networks with expected sizes and structures were routinely observed with critical point drying. The resolution of individual strands of DNA was greatly improved, and image artifacts associated with air dried samples were eliminated. Samples prepared using mildly sonicated kinetoplast DNA show isolated minicircles.

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