Confocal microscopy is now the standard for optical images in journal publications. The Microscopy Core facility offers the systems and training needed to generate sharp images from the widest range of samples and staining techniques. Six different confocal microscopes cover all the requirements for speed, sensitivity, versatility, resolution and automation. There is a luminescence dark box imager for viewing luciferase expression in live organisms and cells. Users are also able to transform cells with a gene gun, verify results on two fluorescence stereo-microscopes, and study surface details of live material on the scanning electron microscope. A laser capture system enables separation of different cell types from mixed tissues for more precise genomic and proteomic analysis. Supporting these instruments are a complete set of tissue sectioning instruments; a microtome, an ultramicrotome with cryo-capability, an oscillating tissue slicer, and a cryostat. A large fluidics robot supports IIGB’s chemical genomics by giving easy access to our 70,000 compound library.
The microscopy core facility was established in 2002 under the supervision of a full-time imaging expert and academic coordinator. The center is developing high-throughput imaging capabilities to maximize productivity and enable large chemical and mutant screening experiments. It is pioneering a range of optical imaging applications for use in Arabidopsis and other model systems.