Olympus has announced its cell TIRF illuminator, which offers four individually controlled motorised channels for simultaneous image capture.
With the cell TIRF system, each laser wavelength is optimally focused and each angle is individually set, allowing different wavelengths to have the same penetration depth.
Combined, these features allow the cell TIRF system to simultaneously capture multiple channels with independently adjusted TIRF angles.
Researchers do not have to make time-consuming adjustments during experiments.
Users can operate the software through a graphical user interface (GUI), keyboard arrow keys or the mouse wheel, to control the incident angle of each wavelength and adjust TIRF penetration depths.
Users can also preset calculated penetration depths for all four lasers with just a single mouse click; the system will individually adjust each laser's angle automatically to simultaneously capture TIRF from all four channels.
A number of additional capabilities make this system useful for cell biologists and other researchers.
For instance, one laser line can be adjusted so the system can do fluorescence recovery after photobleaching (FRAP) experiments.
A handy button is available to switch to wide-field imaging, allowing researchers to visualise the complete cell profile, see nuclei or find the field they want to observe.
TIRF imaging mode can be re-established in less than 500ms.
Users can also control laser intensities on screen.
The design has all four laser inputs coming in from one side, making the compact system easy to set up and integrate with incubator systems.
Researchers can insert clean-up filters for lasers if needed.
The main unit is built from single billet aluminum for rigidity and robustness, making it more tolerant of small temperature fluctuations that may occur in rooms where it is placed.
Accompanying the launch of the cell TIRF illuminator are Olympus laser systems incorporating the most commonly used laser wavelengths in the 405-640nm range.
The directly coupled laser systems feature attenuable laser power up to 100mW, and offer better delivery efficiency to the microscope than laser combiner options.
Each laser system is a small, stackable integrated unit.
The system can be retrofitted to Olympus IX2 microscopes including the IX71 and IX81 microscopes.
The ability to carry out simultaneous multi-channel image capture allows scientists to efficiently study rapidly changing intracellular processes, perform high-precision ratio experiments and more.