Wellcome Trust Centre For Mitochondrial Research

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Dr Paola Actis from the University of Leeds will be speaking as part of the WCMR seminar series on the 18th July 2019 from 1-2pm in the CISR.

The title of Dr Actis’s talk is ‘The world’s most precise surgery: extraction of a single mitochondrion from a living cell’.


The integration of a nanoscale needle with robotic manipulation enables the extraction of “material” from living cells (and tissues) down to one single mitochondrion. I will present data (and nice videos) demonstrating how a biopsy from a single living cell can be performed. I will show how we can extract and analyse RNA and mitochondria from precise locations within a cell while keeping the cell alive so that repeated biopsies can be performed over time. I will also show how we can use the nanoscale needles to inject “material” inside living cells and demonstrate how we can count the number of molecules we inject to enable quantitative single-cell injections. I will then discuss some potential applications of this technology to further our understanding of mitochondrial biology.