Improved optical sectioning delivers higher resolution without the need to acquire a z-stack
At Neuroscience 2017, a new imaging mode for the ZEISS LSM 8 family with Airyscan has been introduced. Their unique 32-channel GaAsP array detector captures more spatial information than traditional confocal microscopes. The new 2D Superresolution mode now uses this additional information to create an optical section of 0.2 Airy units (AU) and resolves structures down to 120 nanometer laterally in a single image.
The benefits for scientists
In the past, researchers had to acquire a stack of z-slices and subsequently deconvolve to get optical sections thinner than one AU and enhance lateral resolution. Temporal resolution was thus limited, and a prolonged light exposure of the sample was inevitable. Scientists can now use the new 2D Superresolution mode to overcome this problem and perform gentle live cell imaging experiments. They profit from very low light exposure, highly resolved structural information and excellent signal-to-noise ratio.
The principle behind
ZEISS Airyscan is an area detector. Unlike traditional confocal microscopes which reject photons from outside of the focal plane at a pinhole, ZEISS Airyscan detects all precious fluorescence emission photons of 1.25 AU. Their information is then used to deliver higher sensitivity, superresolution, and high acquisition speeds. The new 2D Superresolution mode takes advantage of the fact that ZEISS Airyscan captures x, y and z information of the confocal point spread function. A new exclusive processing algorithm uses this inherent spatial information captured in a single image. It specifically distinguishes between photons originating from the focal plane of 0.2 AU and photons from outside of this focal plane. In a traditional confocal microscope, a researcher could only close the pinhole to 0.2 AU to attempt to achieve the same optical sectioning. This would mean sacrificing many photons, even from the focal plane, thus reducing signal-to-noise drastically.
Researchers can process both existing and new ZEISS Airyscan data with the new 2D Superresolution mode.
Carl Zeiss Microscopy GmbH
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ZEISS is an internationally leading technology enterprise operating in the fields of optics and optoelectronics. The ZEISS Group develops, produces and distributes measuring technology, microscopes, medical technology, eyeglass lenses, camera and cinema lenses, binoculars and semiconductor manufacturing equipment. With its solutions, the company constantly advances the world of optics and helps shape technological progress. ZEISS is divided up into the four segments Research & Quality Technology, Medical Technology, Vision Care/Consumer Products and Semiconductor Manufacturing Technology. The ZEISS Group is represented in more than 40 countries and has over 50 sales and service locations, more than 30 manufacturing sites and about 25 research and development centers around the globe.
In fiscal year 2015/16 the company generated revenue approximating €4.9 billion with over 25,000 employees. Founded in 1846 in Jena, the company is headquartered in Oberkochen, Germany. Carl Zeiss AG is the strategic management holding company that manages the ZEISS Group. The company is wholly owned by the Carl Zeiss Stiftung (Carl Zeiss Foundation).
Further information at www.zeiss.com
The Microscopy business group is the world’s only one-stop manufacturer of light, electron, X-ray and ion microscope systems. The portfolio compromises solutions and services for the life sciences and materials research as well as for industry, education and clinical practice. The business group is headquartered in Jena. Additional production and development sites are located in Oberkochen, Göttingen and Munich, as well as in Cambridge in the UK, and in Peabody, MA and Pleasanton, CA in the USA. The business group is allocated to the Research & Quality Technology segment. Around 6,100 employees work for the segment, generating revenue totaling €1.5 billion in fiscal year 2015/16.