Journal of Materials Science

, Volume 44, Issue 14, pp 3813–3818 | Cite as

High-throughput SEM preparation of proteinaceaous extracellular matrix

  • Maja WiegemannEmail author
  • Frank Lehmann


Adhesives of aquatic organisms are of high scientific interest with a view to biomimicry. The visualization of their fine-structure, however, is difficult due to the fragility of the extracellular matrix (ECM). Care must be taken in its preparation for high-resolution SEM. Relating matrix structures to substrate properties demands a high throughput of samples for reliable comparisons. In order to acquaint ourselves with a suitable method we found an easy way to manage the critical steps of preparation for SEM. We show that thin layers of proteinaceous matrix can be satisfactorily prepared by combining freeze-drying and sputtering in a conventional sputter coater after one-step fixation (2.5% glutaraldehyde). The results were superior to CPD.


PDMS Chemical Fixation Glutaraldehyde Fixation Fast Freezing Substrate Piece 



We thank Prof. M. Kern—head of the Clinic of Prosthodontics, Propaedeutics and Dental Materials at the University Kiel, Germany—for supporting this study. The publication is part of a project funded by the German Research Foundation—Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG).


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.BAH, Alfred Wegener InstituteHelgolandGermany
  2. 2.Department of Prosthodontics, Propaedeutics and Dental MaterialsChristian-Albrechts UniversityKielGermany

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