Microscopy Solutions for Sample Preparation
Microscopy applications for your laboratory

Microscopy Solutions for Sample Preparation

For Further Examinations such as Genetic Studies

Many disciplines – such as developmental biology, molecular biology, embryology, plant sciences and neurobiology – work with model organisms that often need special handling or preparation before further examinations such as genetic studies.

C. elegans (a nematode), zebrafish Danio rerio and the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster are widely used, respectively, in worm labs, zebrafish labs and fly facilities. These model organisms need to be routinely sorted, picked, counted, manipulated, dissected, imaged and monitored during their development stages (e.g. egg, embryo, larva …). Stereo or dissecting microscopes are indispensable tools for these tasks.

Model organisms can be bacteria, fungi, plants or animals. Ideally, model organisms should exhibit certain characteristics:

  • Share many genes with humans
  • Small size and easy to grow in the lab
  • Visible congenital traits
  • Sequenced genome available
  • Easy genetic manipulation
  • Genetically tractable
  • Short generation times and life cycle

Examples of common model organisms

  • Caenorhabditis elegans germline.
    Drosophila melanogaster
    Zebrafish
    Xenopus laevis, Xenopus tropicalis
    Field of Study
    • Developmental biology
    • Molecular biology
    • Physiology
    • Pharmacology
    • Toxicology
    • Genetics
    • Developmental biology
    • Neuroscience
    • Embryology
    • Developmental biology
    • Molecular biology
    • Toxicology
    • Neurobiology
    • Embryology
    • Developmental Biology
    • Cell Biology
    • Neurobiology
    Characteristics
    • Transparent throughout lifetime
    • Rapid generation time (3 days)
    • Easy to manipulate
    • Easy to grow and maintain
    • Short generation time (8-14 days)
    • 4 chromosome pairs
    • Easy to manipulate
    • Share of 70% of genes with humans
    • Easy to breed
    • Transparant
    • Easy to manipulate
    • Embryos easily accessible
    • 10000 oocytes
    • Large oocytes/embryos
    • Eeasy to manipulate
  • Mus musculus
    Rattus norvegicus
    Axolotl
    Arabidopsis thaliana
    Field of Study
    • Neurobiology
    • Genetics
    • Genomics
    • Pharma
    • Clinical Research
    • Neuroscience
    • Toxicology
    • Genetics
    • Gnomics
    • Pysiology
    • Regenerative medicine
    • Developmental biology
    • Developmental Biology
    • Cell Biology
    • Molecular Biology
    • Genetics
    • Plant Physiology
    Characteristics
    • Relatively short generation time (~10 weeks)
    • 99% homolog to humans
    • Disease model
    • Genetically tractable
    • Easy to manipulate
    • Disease model
    • Source for primary neurons
    • Larger organs
    Can regenerate its
    • Tail
    • Limbs
    • Parts of its brain…
    • Small genome
    • 5 chromosome pairs
    • Many mutants
    • Easy to manipulate
Microscopy Solutions for Sample Preparation

Microscope Requirements

There are two types of stereo microscopes – Greenough and Common Main Objective (CMO) – each with its own special characteristics. The CMO-type provides certain advantages over the Greenough-type, particularly when it comes to illumination, fluorescence capabilities, digital image documentation and ergonomics. Greenough stereo microscopes, however, are more compact, highly integrated and economical in price.

Scientists and technicians can be supported in their daily routines by a 3D stereoscopic view combined with a large free-working distance and ergonomic features. These microscopes are perfect for mechanical manipulation, sorting, and general sample preparation. Stereo or zoom microscopes are also used preferentially for fluorescence screening of modified genotypes (for example, through CRISPR/Cas9 mediated mutations) in transgenic studies using markers such as the green (GFP) or red (RFP) fluorescent protein. Combining a large field of view with high resolution will speed up this process significantly.

Dissecting microscopes are also widespread in neuroscience – say, when dealing with larger vertebrate animals such as rats, which often serve as a source of primary cell cultures.

Application Examples

Acquired with ZEISS Stemi 508
C. elegans in reflected light brightfield. Acquired with ZEISS Stemi 508.
Acquired with ZEISS Stemi 508
Tail of zebrafish embryo in oblique transmitted light. Acquired with ZEISS Stemi 508.
Acquired with ZEISS Stemi 508
Drosphyla embryos acquired with ZEISS Stemi 508
Acquired with ZEISS Stemi 508
Spider crab embryos in transmitted light darkfield. Acquired with ZEISS Stemi 508

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