The advanced cell imaging system, composed of a Leica Thunder 3D Live Cell microscope with TIRF (Total Internal Reflection Fluorescence Microscopy) module and a live cell imaging chamber, was established within the CEPHARES project.
The Leica Thunder system is an advanced fluorescence microscope equipped with a high quality and sensitivity sCMOS camera with a large sensor of 19-mm diagonal. By application of image processing algorithms, the Leica Thunder system has the capability of 3D visualization due to elimination of noise resulting from light scattering, and has profoundly enhanced resolution, especially along the Z axis compared with standard fluorescence microscopes, at the same time preserving high sensitivity and image acquisition speed.
The TIRF module integrated with the Leica Thunder system is an innovative solution which enables the acquisition of detailed images of molecular interactions and structures located close to the surface of the cell membrane. The TIRF technique utilizes total internal reflection to minimize signal disturbances derived from the remaining areas of the cell.
The system will be able to achieve its full potential in live imaging of fast cellular processes and molecular interactions in membranes of live cells, e.g., testing of drug-induced interactions of membrane receptors or activation of signal transmission pathways, thanks to integration with a high quality OKOlab environmental chamber, which preserves precisely controlled conditions – temperature, CO2 and O2 – for cells in the process of imaging.