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The Confocal Microscopy Core Facility is supported by CCR and there is no charge to individual users for confocal time. Collaborations with laboratories outside the CCR are also considered, time permitting. Please refer to our publications list for examples of confocal imaging that have been done by the Facility.

*Note that the confocal facility is only used over the weekend for time lapse imaging that starts on Friday.  Inexperienced users must work during normal hours (8 am to 6 pm) until they are fully trained to work independently on the confocals.

Step-by-Step Procedures

1) Contact the Confocal Microscopy Core Facility to discuss your experiment.

  • Meet with Langston Lim, Facility Manager, to discuss your specific project and facility procedures. If the project is feasible, an appointment will be scheduled for you to receive training and use the equipment.
  • No Exceptions - No one may use any Facility equipment until he/she has met with Langston Lim.

2) Design your experiment.

  • Select the appropriate fluorophores for your specific system.
  • Decide on the proper fixation or the necessity for live cell imaging.
  • Prepare samples using an appropriate technique (e.g., mounting media, substrate, coverslips)

3) Check the Facility appointment calendars and set up Terabyte.

4) Make an appointment to use the Facility's equipment.

  • Check the appointment calendars for available times.
  • At the top of the appointment form, add a "New Project" and save it before it will actually take appointment. When making appointment, fill out the submission form. Be sure to fill in all the fields as this will be a good record of your imaging for that appointment.  It will also let confocal staff know how to set up the confocal.
  • A reminder email is sent to the user.

5) Take hands-on training on the selected system.

  • Training occurs during your appointment with your samples.
  • You will work independently after you have been fully trained (usually several appointments).

6) Back up images and data using the Terabyte server

  • All original images are backed up on Terabyte server and on external drives.
  • "Where is it?" software is in place to help you locate your images/data.

7) Facility staff can help you with:

  • Setting up the required software
  • Accessing images on Terabyte server from your desktop

8) Process your images via these software packages:

  • Zeiss ZEN
  • Zeiss LSM 3.2
  • Imaris 4.0.4
  • PhotoShop 7.0
  • Image Pro Plus
  • Image Pro Premier

9) Facility staff can also help you with analysis:

  • Co-localization
  • FRET measurements
  • FRAP measurements
  • 3D reconstructions, surface renderings, and volume renderings
  • Intensity measurements and tracking
  • Generation of movies (2D, 3D, 4D)
  • Publication-quality prints
Last updated by Lim, Langston (NIH/NCI) [E] on Oct 10, 2017