Special Zeiss FESEM Microscope Available in March

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Monday 11/23/2015

Electron Microscopy will host a Zeiss Sigma field emission SEM (FESEM) February 29 - March 18, 2016. There are numerous advantages of modern FESEM system over conventional tungsten SEMs, most notably greater resolution (sub-nanometer possible). ZEISS will highlight not only the superb image quality and ease of use with their state-of-the-art Sigma500 FESEM, but also show new tools for automated collection of serial sections (array tomography) and correlative light and electron microscopy (CLEM).

Zeiss will showcase the Sigma500 FESEM using samples from Fred Hutch. Sample preparation is very important with correlative techniques. If you are interested in participating please contact Fernando Migone (1-607-279-6420), The Electron Microscopy Resource (206-667-4289), or Scientific Imaging (206-667-4205), and we will assist with sample preparation.

Traditionally scanning electron microscopy has been considered a surface imaging technology. However, FESEM has developed into a much more versatile tool due to its ability to easily create TEM-like images of a broader array of samples. There are several benefits to this capability, especially the ability to put much larger samples in the chamber. This means the user can automatically scan and image hundreds of serial sections on a single coverslip without the need to vent the system. Additionally, it is much easier to navigate inside an SEM due to the large field-of-view and simple tricks such as taking a low magnification LM image and using it to navigate by with the SEM software. This can even be done with a simple cell phone image creating a practical workflow experience.

Correlative microscopy is rapidly gaining traction as an indispensable tool for providing key insights into biological phenomenon by combing two or more different microscopy platforms to image the exact same location within a sample. Specifically, the ability to combine fluorescence imaging from a light microscope along with ultrastructure context from the EM. This is an area Zeiss has made significant efforts to develop simple and efficient solutions. Shuttle and Find, an easy-to-use and automated solution for correlative microscopy, will be highlighted at the Fred Hutch Bio-EM workshop in March. The figure below is a typical example of how traditional thin-section EM preparation approaches ca n be combined with light microscopy using our Sigma500 SEM to create a high-resolution TEM-like image and overlaid with fluorescence (Blue = DAPI, Red = Alexa 647 anti-GFP antibody). Shuttle and Find enables the rapid relocation of the same LM image locations on the SEM, thus providing directed and novel understandings of cells and tissues with remarkable productivity.

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Shared Resources are core facilities that provide services and access to specialized equipment for research activities.


Rajesh K. Uthamanthil, DVM, PhD, DACLAM

Associate Vice President, Shared Resources