Corporate Banner
Satellite Banner
Scientific Community
Become a Member | Sign in
Home>News>This Article

Imaging Facility adds Two Tools for Microscopy

Published: Monday, February 18, 2013
Last Updated: Monday, February 18, 2013
Bookmark and Share
Cornell's Imaging Facility owns microscopes, scanners and ultrasound units for revealing details that can't be seen with the naked eye.

Now the facility has added two more state-of-the-art machines, one to extract tiny samples for genetic analysis and another to image fast microscopic events.

The Imaging Facility, located in Weill Hall and in the College of Veterinary Medicine, specializes in microscopy, whole organism imaging and high-resolution micro-CT (computed tomography), for visualizing samples from cells and engineered tissues to fossils, tomatoes and sharks.

The facility now has a spinning disk confocal microscope that enables users to image and manipulate fluorescent specimens rapidly; and an instrument for laser capture microdissection, which allows researchers to isolate specific cells or tissues from a sample by slicing out particular regions with a laser.

Once cells or tissues are cut, the laser capture microdissection machine pops the new sample into a tube where its genomic or proteomic profile can be analyzed. Normally, a sample with many tissue types is ground up and genetically sequenced. Researchers must then piece together fragments of genetic code from the potpourri. This new method allows researchers to isolate specific cells or regions prior to genetic analysis.

Cornell has two other laser capture microdissection tools on campus. The new one in the Imaging Facility is part of the Biotechnology Resource Center (BRC), which provides Cornell researchers with an array of state-of-the-art instruments and services. Managed by Cornell's Institute for Biotechnology, whose director is Jocelyn Rose, professor of plant biology, the BRC comprises seven facility laboratories focused on genomics (DNA sequencing, genotyping and microarrays), epigenomics, proteomics and mass spectrometry, bio-IT, bioinformatics and computational biology, advanced technology assessment and imaging. These tools and services are available to the university community and to investigators at other institutions.

The laser capture microdissection unit provides another capability for genomic analysis that can be bridged with other BRC resources for every phase of an experiment, said research scientist Rebecca Williams, the Imaging Facility's director.

"A researcher can microdissect a sample and end up with a tube of cells. Then we can help them find the correct genomics core facility" to have that sample sequenced, and then put them in touch with a biostatistics technician who can help analyze the sample, she added.

By raising and lowering the field of view, the new spinning disk confocal microscope can take repeated shots that are stitched together to create 3-D images. It can shoot more than 100 frames per second, allowing researchers to record such quick processes as calcium signaling or other fast movements. It also allows researchers to use photoactivated proteins (that turn on or change colors when hit with light) or photobleached proteins (that turn off when hit with light), providing insights to how proteins move within cells.

"Spinning disk confocal microscopes have been around for maybe 10 years, but this system is fully loaded; it's a fancy system," said Williams. It is fitted with three cameras for 3-D imaging of various colors, a photomanipulation unit, and control of such environmental conditions as carbon dioxide and oxygen levels.

Along with image analysis and visualization, the facility has software to manage the amount of data generated from taking 100 images per second, for example.

"Our job is to train people in these technologies and make it as easy as possible to use them," Williams said. "We train 100 researchers a year to use these microscopes."

Further Information

Join For Free

Access to this exclusive content is for Technology Networks Premium members only.

Join Technology Networks Premium for free access to:

  • Exclusive articles
  • Presentations from international conferences
  • Over 3,500+ scientific posters on ePosters
  • More than 5,100+ scientific videos on LabTube
  • 35 community eNewsletters

Sign In

Forgotten your details? Click Here
If you are not a member you can join here

*Please note: By logging into you agree to accept the use of cookies. To find out more about the cookies we use and how to delete them, see our privacy policy.

Related Content

Tumor-suppressing Gene Lends Insight to Cancer Treatment
Researchers have found that delicate replication process derails if a gene named PTEN has mutated or is absent.
Tuesday, July 14, 2015
$5.5M NSF Grant Aims to Improve Rice Crops with Genome Editing
Researchers to precisely target, cut, remove and replace DNA in a living cell to improve rice.
Friday, May 08, 2015
A ‘STAR’ is Born: Engineers Devise Genetic 'On' Switch
A new “on” switch to control gene expression has been developed by Cornell scientists.
Tuesday, February 03, 2015
Computer Model Reveals Cancer's Energy Source
Findings focused on the energy-making process in cancer cells known as the Warburg Effect.
Tuesday, August 19, 2014
For Cancer Patients, Sugar-Coated Cells are Deadly
Paszek’s lab will focus on developing high-resolution microscopy to further study cell membrane-related cancer mechanisms.
Friday, June 27, 2014
Shark, Human Proteins are Surprisingly Similar
Despite widespread fascination with sharks, the world’s oldest ocean predators have long been a genetic mystery.
Friday, December 06, 2013
Gold-Plated Nano-Bits Find, Destroy Cancer Cells
Scientists have merged tiny gold and iron oxide particles, then added antibody guides to steer them through the bloodstream toward colorectal cancer cells.
Monday, October 21, 2013
Using Genes to Rescue Animal and Plants from Extinction
With estimates of losing 15 to 40 percent of the world’s species over the next four decades researchers whether science should employ genetic engineering to the rescue.
Friday, September 27, 2013
Dad’s Genes Build Placentas
Though placentas support the fetus and mother, it turns out that the organ grows according to blueprints from dad.
Monday, August 12, 2013
Physicists Tease out Twisted Torques of DNA
Like an impossibly twisted telephone cord, DNA, the molecule that encodes genetic information, also often finds itself twisted into coils.
Monday, July 01, 2013
Expelled DNA that Traps Toxins May Backfire in Obese
The body’s most powerful immune cells may have a radical way of catching their prey that could backfire on people who are overweight.
Wednesday, June 19, 2013
Genetic Switches Play Big Role in Human Evolution
Study offers further proof that the divergence of humans from chimpanzees was profoundly influenced by mutations to DNA sequences.
Wednesday, June 12, 2013
Genome Offers Clues to Amphibian-Killing Fungus
A fungus that has decimated amphibians globally is much older than previously thought.
Thursday, May 30, 2013
Scientists Find Clues to Some Inherited Heart Diseases
Cornell researchers have uncovered the basic cell biology that helps explain heart defects found in diseases known as laminopathies.
Tuesday, May 07, 2013
Scientists Develop World's Smallest Drug Deliverer
Cornell researchers have created a pore in “Cornell Dots” – brightly glowing nanoparticles nicknamed C-Dots – that can carry medicine.
Friday, April 12, 2013
Scientific News
Integrated Omics Analysis
Studying multi-omics promises to give a more holistic picture of the organism and its place in its ecosystem, however despite the complexities involved those within the field are optimistic.
Unravelling the Role of Key Genes and DNA Methylation in Blood Cell Malignancies
Researchers from the University of Nebraska Medical Center have demonstrated the role of Dnmt3a in safeguarding normal haematopoiesis.
Agilent Presents Early Career Professor Award to Dr. Roeland Verhaak
JAX professor recognized for the development and implementation of workflows for the analysis of big-data from transcriptomics to next generation sequencing approaches.
Ovarian Cancer Insight
Study showed tumours release cytokines to attract macrophages, which secrete growth factors that in turn promote tumour growth.
Bacterial Genes Boost Current in Human Cells
Borrowing and tweaking bacterial genes to enhance electrical activity might treat heart, nervous system injury.
Less Frequent Cervical Cancer Screening
HPV-vaccinated women may only need one screening every 5 to 10 years with screening starting later in life.
Questioning the Safety of Selenium to Combat Cancer
Research indicates the need for change in practice as selenium supplements cannot be recommended for preventing colorectal cancer.
Supercomputers Could Improve Cancer Diagnostics
Researchers push the boundaries of cancer research through high-performance computing to map the human immunone.
Transgenomic, Precipio Diagnostics Merger
Merger will creates a robust diagnostic platform focused on improving accuracy of cancer diagnoses.
Leukaemia Cell Movement Gives Clues to Tackling Treatment-Resistant Disease
Researchers at Imperial College London have suggested that the act of moving itself may help the cells to survive, possibly through short-lived interactions with an array of our own cells.
Skyscraper Banner

Skyscraper Banner
Go to LabTube
Go to eposters
Access to the latest scientific news
Exclusive articles
Upload and share your posters on ePosters
Latest presentations and webinars
View a library of 1,800+ scientific and medical posters
3,500+ scientific and medical posters
A library of 2,500+ scientific videos on LabTube
5,100+ scientific videos