The femtOgene is an ultracompact scanning non-linear microscope with galvoscanners for beam scanning and focussing optics equipped with large-NA objectives (40x/1.3). Multiphoton effects in a sub-femtoliter focal volume induce a transient nanohole in the cellular membrane which allows optical nanoinjection of macromolecules including DNA, RNA, and proteins. The non-invasive gentle creation of a nanoopening without any collateral damage avoids cell death and enables fast self-repairing. Targeted transfection can be performed with high efficiency. femtOgene is based on a sub-20 femtosecond near infrared laser microscope with high-order dispersion compensation. The novel dispersion technology overcomes the problems of beam fluctuations observed in femtosecond laser systems based on prism technology. Nanoprocessing is performed in two exposure modes: (a) scanning of a region of interest (ROI) and (b) by single point illumination. Ablation, drilling and cutting can be performed with submicron accuracy. Targeted transfection and optical nanoinjection are based on millisecond exposure times and <10 mW mean power at 85 MHz repetition frequency.
Laser induced transient changes in cellular membrane