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Three dimensional collagen gels are evaluated as matrices for the study of live cells by Raman spectroscopy. The study is conducted on a human lung adenocarcinoma (A549) and a spontaneously immortalized human epithelial keratinocyte (HaCaT) cell line. It is demonstrated, using the Alamar Blue assay, that both cell models exhibit enhanced viability in collagen matrices compared to quartz substrates, commonly used for Raman spectroscopy. Using principal component analysis, it is shown that the Raman spectral analysis of cells in collagen matrices are minimally contaminated by substrate contributions and the cell to cell spectral variations are greatly reduced compared to those measured on quartz substrates. Furthermore, the spectral measurements are seen to have little contribution from the cell culture medium, implying that cultures can be kept viable over prolonged measurement or mapping procedures.
Bonnier, F., Meade, A., Merzha, S., Knief, P., Bhattacharya, K., Lyng, F., Byrne,H.: Three Dimensional Collagen Gels as a Cell Culture Matrix for the Study of Live Cells by Raman Spectroscopy. Analyst, 135, 1697-1703. 2010.