IMPETUX – Optical Tweezers for Mechanobiology

Optical tweezers platform – SENSOCELL™

A novel concept of optical tweezers for cell mechanobiology research:

  • Force measurements in vitro, in vivo or in situ
  • No calibrations needed
  • Up to 256 optical traps
  • Compatible with Fluorescence Imaging & customisable routines


Left (click for movie):

Cell nucleus indentation experiment performed with SENSOCELL optical tweezers system. The trapped microsphere is pushed against the nucleus (in blue) and moved away after some seconds. The cell (in green) exhibits a bleb at lower side during the measurement.



IMPETUX – Optical Tweezers for Mechanobiology

Impetux is a worldwide key manufacturer and supplier of turnkey optical tweezers systems designed for mechanobiology studies in living cells and 3D tissues. Based on our distinctive and worldwide patented technology, SENSOCELL™ allows manipulating and deforming cells as whole or even endogenous structures such as the cell membrane, the cell nucleus, vesicles and other organelles while tracking the in vivo biological forces involved, even inside living tissues. Discover the insights of the rich world of cell mechanobiology in studies like cell micro-rheology, nucleus mechanotransduction, cell membrane mechanics, molecular motor activity and cell-cell interactions. SENSOCELL™ enables outstanding and unprecedented optical trapping experiences to explore new ways to boost your research.

Optical tweezers platform – SENSOCELL™

  • Generate up to 256 optical traps thanks to its AOD beam steering technology enabling extensive manipulating control over them
  • Get direct force measurements inside cells and tissues. No previous calibrations are needed: just trap & measure!
  • Track simultaneous force measurements over multiple independent traps
  • Measure forces applied either over trapped exogenous spherical particles or directly over whole cells or endogenous trappable cellular structures such as lipid vesicles, membranes or nuclei
  • A wide variety of imaging techniques compatibility (BF, epi-FL, DIC, TIRF, Confocal…)
  • Use our predefined & customizable routines for cell mechanobiology: force clamp, active & passive micro-rheology, cell stretching, tether pulling…
  • …or create your own routines using our simple LightAce Software Development Kit!
  • Includes an ultra-stable single-frequency laser source (5W, 1064 nm) for the best performance in frequency-dependent studies

To view or download SENSOCELL™ Optical Tweezer Platform brochure, click here

LightAce: user-friendly control software suite for SENSOCELL™

Impetux have created a  powerful, flexible and user-friendly control software suite for SENSOCELL™ optical tweezers called LightAce.  The software is based on the integration of LABVIEW (National Instruments), ImageJ and μ-Manager. Easy and intuitive to work with, LightAce will allow you to:

  • Take control over multiple optical traps and read real time force & position data for each trapped target.; apply force clamping or launch built-in routines. Simply selecting the different options on the interface menu, LightAce offers you an incredible set of trapping, manipulation & measurement capabilities!
  • Customize predefined routines for your specific experiments choosing the setting parameter values for each menu option.
  • Use predefined and customisable automated routines for cell mechanobiology or create your own routines using the simple and flexible LightAce Software Development Kit (SDK) completed by a variety of examples.

In developing LightAce, Impetux have created a user-friendly GUI. After a short training course given by their engineers, non-experts users can start working immediately and plan experiments from the very beginning. To learn more, view below video:

For Applications examples of SENSOCELL™ click applications tab or watch video:

Applications for Cell & Tissue Mechanobiology

 Tether Pulling

Study cell membrane mechanics in cells and explants performing tether pulling experiments. Use our customizable routines or create your own tether pulling routines. For more information, click here.



Immune Cells Interactions

Use SENSOCELL™ to measure immune cells Interaction forces in in vitro and in vivo conditions:
Manipulate whole cells to engage cell-cell interactions and measure their binding forces while having absolute control on cells orientation and contact time. Use suspended or adhered target cells for your experiments. Use functionalized beads and/or substrates to measure receptor-ligand binding forces in diverse experimental configurations like bead-bead, bead-substrate, cell-bead or cell-substrate interactions. For more information, click here


Active Micro-Rheology

Perform active and passive micro-rheology experiments in viscoelastic media like cell’s cytoplasm, hydrogels or biofilms. To learn more, click here



Cell & Nucleus Deformation


Study cell membrane and cell nucleus machanotransduction pathways by stretching the cell as a whole or manipulating the cell nucleus. To learn more, click here




Cell-ECM Interactions

Study the dynamics and forces of transmembrane mechanoreceptors in cell-ECM interactions at the single molecule level. To learn more, click here



In Vivo Motor Proteins Activity

Study the activity and kinetics of motor proteins in vitro and in vivo. Measure stall forces of protein motors and observe tug-of-war and cooperating phenomena. To learn more, click here



A unique optical tweezers force measurement method based on light momentum analysis.

The key of Impetux’s technology is that it measures the force as a derived magnitude of the direction of propagation (momentum) of the laser trapping beam. The analysis of laser trapping light momentum changes provides a direct route to the force. Hence, unlike other systems based on regular back focal plane interferometry or video tracking our force sensor allows measuring forces without requiring any sample position tracking or any previous trap stiffness calibration. This gives our technology a key advantage for measuring forces in complex media like cells or biological tissues since no restrictions on the sample are imposed.

Click here for White Paper on Light Momentum Analysis Technique

Force sensor from Impetux







Active Micro-Rheology using Optical Tweezers: for an application note, click here

Active microrheology using optical tweezers








In Vivo Motor Proteins Activity: Click Here for tutorial















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