Cell and Tissue Imaging Core Advanced cellular microscopy is a powerful tool for biological research and has an important role to play in the study of the pathogenesis and treatment of diabetes mellitus. Imaging technology has evolved rapidly over the last decade leading to improvements in resolution, sensitivity and speed which have created fundamentally new opportunities for studying processes across many orders of magnitude and in real-time in living cells and animals. At the same time, the costs of increasingly sophisticated equipment are substantial and the expertise to efficiently use, maintain, and develop this equipment is not common in most labs. Therefore, there is a significant gap between the availability of these powerful tools and the ability of investigators to access and use them efficiently. To address these needs, the Washington University Center for Cellular and Tissue Imaging (WUCCI) was established in 2015. During its first year of operations, the WUCCI served 146 research laboratories, including 40 Diabetes Research Center (DRC) members. Feedback from DRC members indicates that needs for advanced microscopic imaging and image analysis are substantial and will continue to grow. Therefore, the DRC is proposing a new Cell and Tissue Imaging Core to leverage the significant institutional investment in the newly created WUCCI. The overall objective of the Cell and Tissue Imaging Core is to provide an integrated approach to investigate the structure and dynamic behavior of diabetes-related cells and tissues. By providing access to and technical support in using advanced cellular microscopy tools, the Cell and Tissue Imaging Core will accelerate the pace, expand the scope, and improve efficiency of diabetes research. During the past 6 months, the DRC Administrative Core established a scholarship program to encourage DRC member use of WUCCI for diabetes-related studies, and 21 investigator laboratories have already benefitted from scholarship awards. The proposed Cell and Tissue Imaging Core services meet the unique requirements of numerous investigators over a wide range of basic and translational research and will attract new investigators into diabetes research. Importantly the users will benefit from the in-depth diabetes and technical expertise of the Core directors and technical staff in the time spent in consultation for experimental design and interpretation of data. The Cell and Tissue Imaging Core will provide essential services that will enable and accelerate the research of DRC center members throughout the next funding cycle.

Public Health Relevance

Cell and Tissue Imaging Core Diabetes affects the cellular structure of numerous tissues. The Cell and Tissue Imaging Core provides innovative technology, services and expertise of the Co-directors and technical staff in advanced cellular imaging and image analysis methods of immunofluorescence, electron microscopy, and x-ray microscopy, thus facilitating structural analysis of diabetes-related tissues not available to individual laboratories. The Core provides diabetes investigators with increased access to facilities, reduced costs, and collaborative opportunities to enhance the efficiency and productivity of their basic and translational research with the ultimate goal of preventing, treating, and curing diabetes mellitus.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)
Center Core Grants (P30)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZDK1)
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Washington University
Saint Louis
United States
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