Single Molecule Force Methods


Force spectroscopy measures the response of proteins, protein complexes, organelles, cells and tissues to extension by measuring the force applied to it. In Leeds, Atomic Force Microscopes are used for force spectroscopy, with a force threshold of ~15 pN using standard cantilevers. This technique has been used to elucidate the determinants of protein mechanical strength, investigate mechano-signalling pathways, the gating of membrane protein channels and characterising transient structure in intrinsically disordered proteins.


  • 2 x MFP-3D AFM (Asylum Research)
  • JPK Nanowizard 4 AFM (Bruker) combined with PicoQuant Microtime 200 FLIM Confocal Microscope
  • Two custom built constant force instrument


Physics and Astronomy, EC Stoner 8.329


Dr David Brockwell
School of Molecular & Cellular Biology


Further information