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live cell imaging

Sunday 30 November 2003

In 1873, Ernst Abbe discovered that features closer than approximately 200 nm cannot be resolved by lens-based light microscopy.

Super-resolution imaging

In recent years, however, several new far-field super-resolution imaging techniques have broken this diffraction limit, producing, for example, video-rate movies of synaptic vesicles in living neurons with 62 nm spatial resolution.

Current research is focused on further improving spatial resolution in an effort to reach the goal of video-rate imaging of live cells with molecular (1-5 nm) resolution.


- Live Cell Imaging at Perkin-Elmer


- Goldman Laboratory at

Open References

- Imaging endocytic clathrin structures in living cells. Kirchhausen T. Trends Cell Biol. 2009 Nov;19(11):596-605. PMID: 19836955 [Free]


- Fluorescent probes for super-resolution imaging in living cells. Fern├índez-Su├írez M, Ting AY. Nat Rev Mol Cell Biol. 2008 Dec;9(12):929-43. PMID: 19002208

- Peters R. Checking and fixing the cellular nanomachinery: towards medical nanoscopy. Trends Mol Med. 2006 Feb;12(2):83-9. PMID: 16406702

- Hoffman RM. The multiple uses of fluorescent proteins to visualize cancer in vivo. Nat Rev Cancer. 2005 Oct;5(10):796-806. PMID: 16195751

- Graves EE, Weissleder R, Ntziachristos V. Fluorescence molecular imaging of small animal tumor models. Curr Mol Med. 2004 Jun;4(4):419-30. PMID: 15354872

- Niell CM, Meyer MP, Smith SJ. In vivo imaging of synapse formation on a growing dendritic arbor. Nat Neurosci. 2004 Mar;7(3):254-260. PMID: 14758365

- Condeelis J, Segall JE. Intravital imaging of cell movement in tumours. Nat Rev Cancer. 2003 Dec;3(12):921-30. PMID: 14737122

- Duden R. Live cell imaging: the ’green revolution’ continues apace. Trends Cell Biol. 2002 Dec;12(12):548. PMID: 12495839

- Falk M. Genetic tags for labelling live cells: gap junctions and beyond. Trends Cell Biol. 2002 Sep;12(9):399-404. PMID: 12220850

- Mironov AA, Polishchuk RS, Luini A. Visualizing membrane traffic in vivo by combined video fluorescence and 3D electron microscopy. Trends Cell Biol. 2000 Aug;10(8):349-53. PMID: 10884688