In this study, tobacco mosaic virus (TMV) provides a resolution criterion for specimen preparation methods as well as for imaging parameters of the scanning force microscope (SFM). We present scanning force microscopic images of the virus embedded in 0.5% buffered phosphotungstic acid solution adsorbed on a freshly cleaved mica surface, and imaged under atmospheric conditions. Individual TMV particles were clearly identified with a characteristic shape of long rods of about 300 nm long and 60-70 nm in apparent width due to the geometric parameters of the tip. The structure of the virus was compared with cryo-electron microscopic data of vitrified suspensions observed to a resolution of 1.15 nm. Uncoated TMV particles were also deposited on evaporated titanium thin films and imaged by SFM.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
- Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics