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Quantification of mechanical forces is a major challenge across biomedical sciences. Yet such measurements are essential to understanding the role of biomechanics in cell regulation and function. Traction force microscopy remains the most broadly applied force probing technology but typically restricts itself to single-plane two-dimensional quantifications with limited spatiotemporal resolution. Here, we introduce an enhanced force measurement technique combining 3D super-resolution fluorescence structural illumination microscopy and traction force microscopy (3D-SIM-TFM) offering increased spatiotemporal resolution, opening-up unprecedented insights into physiological three-dimensional force production in living cells.

Original publication




Journal article


Nano Lett

Publication Date





4427 - 4434


3D SIM, Traction force microscopy, actin cytoskeleton, biomechanics, super-resolution, Computer Simulation, Microscopy, Atomic Force, Traction