We present a method that offers the possibility to directly apply and measure torque on particles in an optical trap. It can be used to rotationally manipulate biopolymers attached to appropriate particles. A flat object is trapped and oriented in the focus of a linearly polarized laser light. The direction and power of the orientational trap are controlled by the polarization state of the light. As a demonstration of the capabilities of the method, we examined the torsional stiffness of dsDNA (λ-DNA) in its linear torsional regime by directly measuring the torque generated by the molecule.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy(all)