Journal Article

Atomic force microscopy of collagen molecules. Surface morphology of segment–long–spacing (SLS) crystallites of collagen

Yoshikazu Fujita, Kunihiko Kobayashi and Takeshi Hoshino

in Microscopy

Published on behalf of The Japanese Society of Microscopy

Volume 46, issue 4, pages 321-326
Published in print January 1997 | ISSN: 2050-5698
Published online January 1997 | e-ISSN: 2050-5701 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/oxfordjournals.jmicro.a023526
Atomic force microscopy of collagen molecules. Surface morphology of segment–long–spacing (SLS) crystallites of collagen

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Three-dimensional structures of laterally aggregated bundles of collagen molecules, segment-long-spacing (SLS) crystallites, were imaged by atomic force microscopy (AFM) in atmosphere. The overall image of the type collagen SLS in a height-amplified mode was semi-cylindrical, –300 nm in length, with two bands of elevation near both N- and C- ends of the molecule. Its ‘cross-sectional’ profile (across the molecular axis) was a smooth arch. The ‘axial’ profile (along the molecular axis) had two prominent peaks–250 nm apart, corresponding to the two bands of elevation. There were several minor peaks between these two prominent peaks. The elevation near both ends may be due to the presence of covalently bound sugars near both N- and C- ends of the helical part of type I collagen α chains. The AFM images of SLS presented here indicate that the type I collagen molecule is not uniform in diameter and has two bulged parts within its triple helix.

Keywords: atomic force microscopy (AFM); collagen,; three-dimensional structure; segment-long-spacing (SLS) crystallite; surface topography; diameter of collagen molecule

Journal Article.  0 words. 

Subjects: Biological Sciences

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