The ability to associate molecules or molecular functions with particular cellular structures is a key element of biological research. Digital imaging methods are significantly expanding the range of information that can be obtained.
The Weis Center for Research possesses the following instrumentation and technical expertise for biological imaging:
- Conventional light and fluorescence microscopy – microscopes (inverted and upright format) are equipped with digital cameras and software for image processing and analysis; microscopes are linked to a central file server to facilitate image file storage and manipulation.
- Immunohistochemistry – IHC analysis of paraformaldehyde-fixed and paraffin-embedded cells and tissues is carried out; immunohistochemical staining is done manually or using a Ventana automated stained; a variety of antigen retrieval protocols are used.
- Laser scanning confocal microscopy – a Leica TCS SP2 laser scanning confocal microscope with prism spectrometer head is used for high resolution imaging and 3D reconstruction of fixed cells and tissues.
- Spinning disk confocal microscopy – An Olympus IX81 inverted microscope with spinning disk unit and high sensitivity CCD camera is used for fluorescence imaging of live or fixed cells and tissues.
- Structured Illumination Microscopy – a Zeiss Axio Observer.Z1 microscope equipped with ApoTome optical sectioning is used to acquire high resolution images as single planes or Z-stacks that can be combined to create 3D images. Available hardware and software allow time-lapse image capture and image-stitching.
- Electron microscopy – a JOEL JEM-1200EX transmission electron microscope is used to obtain high resolution images from fixed cells and tissues.
- Flow cytometry and cell sorting – A BD FACS ARIA II cell sorter with 3 excitation lasers and a photodiode detector for forward scatter is used for mult-channel flow cytometry of labeled cells and cell sorting.