The ability to visualize and determine the localization of molecules within cells and tissues is an essential component of modern biology. Imaging and histology are central to the research mission of the CEHS and its members. The rapid advances in imaging technology within the last decade have greatly advanced the field and provided for new and exciting lines of inquiry. As imaging technologies have become more sophisticated, new and updated equipment and the expertise to use them efficiently and to their full potential is required for investigators to remain competitive. However, the costs and time required to master these techniques are prohibitive for most investigators. The purpose of the Molecular Histology and Fluorescence Imaging (MHFI) Core is to provide CEHS investigators with the means and expertise to perform cutting-edge histology and imaging experiments using state-of-the-art equipment and technical expertise. The histology component provides users with automated sample preparation, increasing throughput while at the same time standardizing sample preparation and staining. This is essential to CEHS investigators as they assess the biological outcome of exposure to environmental toxicants and xenobiotics. The fluorescence imaging component maintains a new, state-of-the-art Olympus FV1000 confocal microscope with spectral detection, live cell, 3D, and TIRF capabilities. The MHFI Core also has a Nuance Multispectral Imaging system and several off-line image analysis workstations allowing users sophisticated tools necessary to analyze their data. Most importantly, in addition to the equipment the Core provides investigators with expert advise and technical expertise to design, implement, and critically analyze histology and fluorescent imaging experiments. The unique services provided by the MHFI Core and its staff is critically important to the competitiveness and success of CEHS investigators and for investigators across the University of Montana and the region in obtaining and maintaining extramural funding.

Public Health Relevance

The MHFI Core will provide CEHS and other UM investigators access to state-of-the-art histological preparation and fluorescence imaging technologies. The Core will serve as a technical resource for investigators by providing scientific expertise to assist with experimental design, data analysis and interpretation, and training.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS)
Center Core Grants (P30)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZGM1-TWD-C (C3))
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University of Montana
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