A room with a view

New Optical Imaging Center provides researchers  a deeper look at cell activity


Research Technician Elizabeth Chang works with a multiphoton microscope in the Department of Cellular and Structural Biology's new Optical Imaging Center. The center recently opened and is designed to provide researchers with sophisticated high-resolution microscopic images.

The Department of Cellular and Structural Biology is offering researchers an opportunity to probe the inner workings of living cells and tissues, using an array of optical microscope technology in applications as varied as cancer research and the development of virtual reality-based training tools.

The recently opened Optical Imaging Center is the gateway, with three different high-level microscopes for use in everything from looking at changes in a cell’s level of acidity to examining how cellular constituents interact with one another. Investigators are using optical imaging technology in applications in clinical diagnostics, cancer and heart disease research.

“With this technology, we are able to look at a variety of different events in the cells as they occur,” said Brian Herman, Ph.D., chairman of the Department of Cellular and Structural Biology and director of the new facility. “And more importantly, we can observe the process in a more natural environment.”