Medical Research Council - London Institute of Medical Sciences

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Bye Bye Bleaching

Reducing bleaching of fluorescent markers allows tissue to be studied for longer

09 October 2018

Bye Bye Bleaching

It’s great getting out to enjoy the sunshine but sunshine comes with a downside, it bleaches things, like your clothes. That bleaching effect plays out in science too when using fluorescence microscopy to image cells with proteins that have been tagged with fluorescent markers. It’s a great way to see what those cells are doing but too much time under the microscope and those fluorescent markers fade. Researchers studying kidney organoids – 3D models of kidney tissue grown in a dish – face the same problem. Now a novel way to image these organoids in 3D has been developed, which causes far less bleaching. Using light sheet fluorescence microscopy, an organoid (pictured) can be viewed from multiple angles by placing it in a rotatable, see-through cylindrical gel. The team successfully tracked the fates of cells (yellow) in the organoid for 15 hours, providing a large window of time to gain helpful insights.

Written by Lux Fatimathas

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