Light sensitive molecular switches have emerged as a powerful tool to interrogate signaling networks and their dynamic behavior. However, to address such questions light needs to be delivered with specific dynamic and spatial patterns. Such patterns can be easily achieved under the microscope by using a wide variety of solutions such as digital mirrors. These devices provide unique single cell (and subcellular) resolution but they are not appropriate for genome wide or proteomic approaches. Here we show the implementation of an LED platform to stimulate cell populations in different growing formats (6 well plate, dishes, flasks…). Light intensity and timing of each LED can be easily controlled by modifying or writing code using the open source Arduino software (IDE).
Here is how the circuit looks. Basically we used the RedBoard from SparkFun (Arduino compatible) to control 3W High Brightness LEDs (using their FemtoBuck to maintain voltage constant). To regulate intensity, we use Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) outputs on the board.
In this video we show how we can regulate the amplitude of the signal in each well and then how we can generate oscillatory inputs of different frequencies. Cool!
This one is for FUN!! Because we can do it! 😉 (Make sure your speakers are high volume)