Technology Webinars

Optical Sectioning using Light Sheet Microscopy:

In Vivo Imaging with Astounding Resolution

This event occurred on Thursday, June 14, 2012
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Light sheet microscopy is an extremely powerful alternative to established fluorescence imaging techniques, especially when it comes to 3-D imaging deep within tissue or within whole live organisms. By selectively illuminating the observed optical section with a thin sheet of light, photo bleaching is reduced to a minimum, making light sheet microscopy ideal for nondestructive imaging of fragile samples over extended periods of time. With this ultimate 3-D microscopy technique, millimeter-sized samples can be imaged extremely fast and with remarkable resolution and penetration depth. Our panel of experts will introduce the audience to this novel and powerful technique, providing real-world examples of its application in a variety of research settings.

 During the webinar, our speakers will:
• Give a brief summary of the technique, its advantages, and its challenges
• Present the advances in their research made possible through the use of light sheet microscopy
• Answer questions submitted by you!

Speaker Bios

Ernst H. K. Stelzer, Ph.D.

Goethe University
Frankfurt, Germany

Dr. Stelzer studied Physics as an undergraduate at the Goethe University in Frankfurt, after which he pursued a Ph.D. at the University of Heidelberg. He held various positions at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) for over 28 years before becoming a professor for Physical Biology at Goethe University. Dr. Stelzer’s interdisciplinary work has bridged the gaps between optical physics, instrumentation development, molecular cell biology, physical biology, and mathematics. His work has been integral to the development of light sheet fluorescence microscopy—which significantly reduces the energy load on specimens—as well as a number of other microscopy devices, resulting in over 220 publications and about 20 patent applications. In 2009, Dr. Stelzer shared the Heidelberg Molecular Life Sciences Prize. His research goal is to develop and apply instruments as well as specimen preparation techniques that allow for the efficient and high-resolution observation and analysis of biological specimens.

Pavel Tomancak, Ph.D.

Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics
Dresden, Germany

Dr. Tomancak did his undergraduate studies at the Masaryk University in Brno, Czech Republic before completing his Ph.D. in developmental biology at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory in Heidelberg, Germany. He conducted his postdoctoral work at the University of California, Berkeley and is currently a research group leader at the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics in Dresden, Germany. Dr. Tomancak's laboratory is using genomics approaches to investigate the role of tissue specific gene expression regulation in development and evolution of Drosophila embryos. His laboratory has developed molecular, imaging, and image analysis approaches to describe the dynamic patterns of gene expression during development with high resolution in space and time, making use of SPIM technology as a cornerstone of their research.

Lars Hufnagel, Ph.D.

European Molecular Biology Laboratory
Heidelberg, Germany

Dr. Hufnagel completed his Ph.D. at the Max Planck Institute for Dynamics and Self-Organisation in Göttingen, Germany, and went on to do his postdoctoral research training at the Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics in Santa Barbara, California. He has been a group leader in the Cell Biology and Biophysics Unit at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) in Heidelberg, Germany since 2007, and in 2010 became a joint group leader at the Center for Modelling and Simulation in the Biosciences, within EMBL. Dr. Hufnagel’s research interests include biophysics, microscopy, optics, developmental and cell biology, and biophysical modeling.

Moderator: Sean Sanders, Ph.D.

Washington, DC

Dr. Sanders did his undergraduate training at the University of Cape Town, South Africa, and his Ph.D. at the University of Cambridge, UK, supported by the Wellcome Trust. Following postdoctoral training at the National Institutes of Health and Georgetown University, Dr. Sanders joined TranXenoGen, a startup biotechnology company in Massachusetts working on avian transgenics. Pursuing his parallel passion for writing and editing, Dr. Sanders joined BioTechniques as an editor, before joining Science/AAAS in 2006. Currently Dr. Sanders is the Editor for Custom Publishing for the journal Science and Program Director for Outreach.

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