The Integrated Microscopy Shared Resource (IMSR) is a state-of-the-art equipment, training, and consultation imaging resource resource for scores of Dan L. Duncan Cancer Center (DLDCC) researchers. Its mission is to provide a full suite of light and electron microscopy (LM, EM), and assay development resources for DLDCC and other BCM investigators. The IMSR staff is well-trained in all aspects of image based investigation and stays at the forefront of new experimental approaches in collaboration with the IMSR leader's research program. The IMSR currently supports image-based studies for both live and fixed cells using manual and automated high throughput microscopy (HTM), and also for ultrastructural studies via transmission EM. The LM resources consist of a new Nikon AIR multispectral and Zeiss LSM 510 META confocal microscopes. A new DeltaVision "Core" deconvolution scope and a thoroughly-upgraded original DeltaVision are now in use along with a Zeiss AxioPlan2/CCD workstation. The Nikon and DeltaVison Core instruments are fully live cell and FRET capable, and both are suitable for multiwell plate usage. Standard HTM capabilities are based upon the two fully-automated Beckman-Coulter IC-100 systems with robotic platforms for fluid handling and plate loading. High content analysis (HCA) support is based upon the fully customizable Pipeline Pilot image analysis platform. HTM and automated image processing are synergistic with primary screening of monoclonal antibodies (Proteomics Shared Resource), and RNAi libraries (RNAi Shared Resource) for high speed pathway analysis in single cell assays. The Hitachi H-7500 transmission digital EM supports ultrastructural studies. IMSR staff include two imaging technologists and a registered electron microscopy technician. IMSR goals are to facilitate and support DLDCC researchers through collaboration on experimental design, user training on all instrumentation and software, and as needed, direct image acquisition or processing by IMSR staff, and assistance in data interpretation and presentation. The IMSR will continue to expand to meet DLDCC needs through equipment grants and vendor arrangements in order to provide Cancer Center investigators with basic and leading-edge imaging infrastructure and expertise.
Microscopy has been, and will continue to be, an indispensable research and medical tool in the field of cancer biology. The Integrated Microscopy Shared Resource provides Cancer Center scientists an invaluable access to a state-of-the art collection of imaging and technical resources that can enable them to excell in their cancer research.
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