1.D.45 The Sonoporation and Electroporation Membrane Pore (SEMP) Family
Sonoporation uses ultrasound, and electroporation uses strong electric fields, to generate transient nonselective pores in cell membranes. These techniques are used for nonviral intracellular drug, protein and gene delivery, and the pore size determines the size of agents that can be delivered into the cytoplasm. Electron microscopy and atomic force microscopy have been used to gauge pore size but such techniques can be unreliable. Changes of the transmembrane current of a single cell under voltage clamp conditions can be used for monitoring pore formation and pore size. Using Xenopus laevis oocytes, the current of single cells was measured in real-time by Zhou et al. 2009 to assess formation of pores. The mean radius of single sonopores was about 110 or - 40 nm.