Core Services : Imaging Core

Imaging Core

Image Core Manager: Analytical Imaging Core Facility (AICF), DRI 6025
John P. Hussman Institute for Human Genomics, Diabetes Research Institute,
Interdisciplinary Stem Cell Institute, and UM/Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center

The Imaging Core at the John P. Hussman Institute for Human Genomics is at the center of the exciting work being done in dynamic microscopic imaging at the University of Miami and in the South Florida scientific community.

In recent years, breakthroughs in the use of cutting-edge microscopes have allowed researchers to peer into the most basic cellular functions as they occur. The images produced are invaluable to the genetics work being done at the Institute. Cellular processes can take place very rapidly, and the movement of individual biological components can be complex and not easily predicted. An enormous barrier to comprehending these processes is the inability to view what is happening with high resolution.

Advanced imaging is done through a wide variety of techniques that include fluorescent and confocal microscopy, among others. As microscopy moves ever deeper into molecular realms, one of the most daunting obstacles to researchers is the poor contrast produced when light is passed through very thick specimens or traveling through specimens with large refractive index changes. To overcome this lack of contrast, imaging labs have perfected a variety of optical “tricks” to increase contrast and to provide color variations in specimens. Finding the right method and optimizing it for data collection from tissue and blood samples can be a daunting process, even for an established imaging laboratory. The breakthroughs in this field are fast and furious, and require constant acquisition of new equipment using the latest cutting-edge techniques.