This article describes the progress in the development of the atomic force microscope as an imaging tool and a force transducer, with particular reference to applications in food science. Use as an imaging tool has matured and emphasis is placed on the novel insights gained from the use of the technique to study food macromolecules and food colloids, and the subsequent applications of this new knowledge in food science. Use as a force transducer is still emerging and greater emphasis is given on the methodology and analysis. Where available, applications of force measurements between molecules or between larger colloidal particles are discussed, where they have led to new insights or solved problems related to food science. The future prospects of the technique in imaging or through force measurements are discussed.
- Atomic force microscopy
- Ligand-receptor interactions