This work describes a system for precise re-location of cells within a monolayer after atomic force imaging. As we know little about probe interaction with soft biological surfaces any corroborative evidence is of great importance. For example, it is of paramount importance in living cell force microscopy that interrogated cells can be re-located and imaged by other corroborative technologies. Methodologies expressed here have shown that non-invasive force parameters can be established for specific cell types. Additionally, we show that the same sample can be transferred reliably to an SEM. Results here indicate that further work with live cells should initially establish appropriate prevailing force parameters and that cell damage should be checked for before and after an imaging experiment. (C) 2004 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.