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Comment: 7 pages, including 4 figures Changes made to introduction Added figure Submitted to SSC
Spatial distribution and dynamics of plasma-membrane proteins are thought to be modulated by lipid composition and by the underlying cytoskeleton, which forms transient barriers to diffusion. So far this idea was probed by single-particle tracking of membrane components in which gold particles or antibodies were used to individually monitor the molecules of interest. Unfortunately, the relatively large particles needed for single-particle tracking can in principle alter the very dynamics under study. Here, we use a method that makes it possible to investigate plasma-membrane proteins by means of small molecular labels, specifically single GFP constructs. First, fast imaging of the region of interest on the membrane is performed. For each time delay in the resulting stack of images the average spatial correlation function is calculated....
In a microcavity, light-matter coupling is quantified by the vacuum Rabi frequency $\Omega_R$. When $\Omega_R$ is larger than radiative and non-radiative loss rates, the system eigenstates (polaritons) are linear superposition of photonic and electronic excitations, a condition actively investigated in diverse physical implementations. Recently, a quantum electrodynamic regime (ultra-strong coupling) was predicted when $\Omega_R$ becomes comparable to the transition frequency. Here we report unambiguous signatures of this regime in a quantum-well intersubband microcavity. Measuring the cavity-polariton dispersion in a room-temperature linear optical experiment, we directly observe the anti-resonant light-matter coupling and the photon-energy renormalization of the vacuum field.
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