Funds are requested to purchase a MBF Bioscience Microscope System for Stereology and Tissue Morphology, including a Zeiss Axio Imager Z1 Microscope with motorized XYZ stage. This powerful hybrid technology combines microscopy, image analysis and stereological tissue morphometrics in one platform. Acquisition of this sophisticated and versatile instrument will provide a new range of tissue imaging and analysis technology to a broad group of investigators whose needs have outgrown the capabilities of our existing instrumentation. This collaborative research group includes investigators in 3 divisions and one Center of the Dept. of Medicine and 2 additional departments of the Univ. of Virginia School of Medicine. The instrument will be housed in a newly renovated centralized shared facility within the Nephrology Division and the Center for Immunity, Inflammation and Regenerative Medicine (CIIR) in the Dept. of Medicine. An advisory committee of 5 senior faculty chaired by the principle investigator (Dr. Mark Okusa, Chief of Nephrology and Director of the CIIR) will oversee the use and maintenance of the instrument and ensure that it is used to its full capacity. Users will reserve instrument time on a Web-based calendar. Two other MBF Bioscience Systems at UVA, located either within individual labs or in shared facilities similar to the one we propose, are unavailable to additional users owing to their heavy usage. A faculty member and member of the CIIR (Dr. Diane Rosin) with extensive experience (15 yrs) in the use of this equipment will serve as Technical Director, train new users, maintain the proposed facility, and facilitate communication with the highly accessible support team at MBF Bioscience. MBF has provided outstanding support worldwide for 20 years by offering timely and responsive trouble-shooting and serving as an enthusiast resource of ongoing development (often user- generated) of modified analysis techniques for its users. The 5 NIH-funded Major Users and 6 Minor Users in this proposal have a strong history of NIH funding and a high potential for future benefit from the scientific impact of the acquisition of this instrument. For state-of-the-art advanced imaging and stereological analysis technology, the specific features found only in the requested instrument are vital for the diverse array of projects described by the Users. The instrument is highly suited to a multi-user setting because integration of the motorized microscope stage by different software modules provides a wide array of data capture and analysis methods (for example, 2D or 3D analysis and reconstruction), data can either be acquired online at the workstation or imported from a wide array of other image applications (MRI, EM, confocal, ultrasound), and users can store personalized settings. With the vast potential of this instrument for use in basic, translation and clinical research projects, the studies that will be enhanced by this instrument will improve our understanding of a wide variety of areas in biomedical sciences, including acute and chronic kidney diseases, autoimmune diseases, inflammation and immunity, fibroproliferative diseases, and cardiovascular and pulmonary diseases.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Center for Research Resources (NCRR)
Biomedical Research Support Shared Instrumentation Grants (S10)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZRG1-CB-J (31))
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Birken, Steven
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University of Virginia
Internal Medicine/Medicine
Schools of Medicine
United States
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