Interuniversity Course on Advanced Light Microscopy - 2022

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Center of Excellence

Content

Advanced fluorescence microscopy has become increasingly important in life science research in recent years. Flanders BioImaging now offers researchers a chance to become familiar with the breadth of advanced techniques available in Flemish microscopy core facilities. During this three-day course, participants will be immersed in the theoretical foundations and practical aspects of methods that will allow them to study molecular interactions and dynamics, acquire three-dimensional datasets from large (cm) specimens, and break through the resolution limit in several different ways.


Each course day will focus on a different topic and is held at one of the microscopy core facilities that make up Flanders BioImaging. This way participants will have the opportunity to become acquainted with the variety of advanced microscopy techniques available within Flanders.

Target Group

PhD students and/or (early-career) post-docs interested in applying advanced light microscopy to their research in life sciences. Master students can participate if they can provide a strong motivation. 

The course is open for participants from all Flemish universities, national and international participants as well as members from industry.

Topics and Objectives

During this three-day course, the participants will be taught the theoretical principles, potential applications, advantages and disadvantages of different advanced imaging methods. Lectures will be provided by experts from the participating institutes, product specialists of microscope manufacturers and international speakers. In the afternoon, each technique will be illustrated during on-site and remote demonstration sessions. These demonstration sessions naturally complement the theoretical lectures and are intended to provide insight into the theoretical principles (participants will be encouraged to discuss their own data or research projects). Together they form a solid basis for further individual hands-on training at - or collaboration with the organizing core facilities. 

 

The first day covers a set of microscopy methods to measure molecular dynamics, i.e. the mobility, stability, interactions and conformational changes of molecules or particles. An introduction to Fluorescence Recovery After Photobleaching (FRAP), Single Particle Tracking (SPT), single molecule Fluorescence Resonance Energy Transfer (smFRET), Fluorescence Correlation Spectroscopy (FCS) and Raster Imaging Correlation Spectroscopy (RICS) will be given followed by demonstration sessions of each technique/experimental set-up. 

 

During the second day we will focus on mesoscale imaging and non-linear optical (NLO) imaging. Mesoscale imaging is a general term referring to various imaging methods that allow the visualization of larger (up to cm) samples while maintaining subcellular resolution. Two specific techniques will be demonstrated: light sheet microscopy and optical projection tomography. Non-linear imaging involves the visualization of (label-free) contrast mechanisms in which at least 2 photons are recombined into a single photon. Due to inherent optical sectioning, greater optical range and the less invasive nature of red-shifted photons employed in NLO imaging this enables live, three dimensional imaging of larger volumes over extended periods of time.

 

On the third day, we will zoom in on super-resolution microscopy. Super-resolution microscopy refers to a collection of techniques that are able to circumvent the fundamental resolution limit imposed by diffraction through various means. The techniques covered include: Airyscan, SIM (SIM-TIRF), SML and STED. Lectures will explain the theory behind the different principles to break the diffraction barrier employed in each technique. Practical sessions will illustrate the possibilities, advantages and disadvantages of enhanced resolution imaging.

Dates and Venues

  • Day 1:  07/10/2022: Ghent University, Campus Heymans, Ottergemsesteenweg 460, Ghent

  • Day 2:  18/11/2022: University of Antwerp, Campus Drie Eiken, Universiteitsplein 1 2610 Wilrijk, Antwerp

  • Day 3:  08/12/2022: KULeuven, Campus Gasthuisberg, Herestraat 49, 3000 Leuven

Registration

Please follow this link: https://webappsx.ugent.be/eventManager/events/IC

 

If the course is fully booked, you can ask to be added to the waiting list in case of cancellations by sending an e-mail to: herlinde.dekeersmaecker@ugent.be.

Registration fee

Registration Fees include admission, course materials, lunch and coffee breaks. Participants are expected to book and pay their own accommodation and travel expenses. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Instructions for payment are given after confirmation of acceptance.

 

Number of participants and motivation letter

The workshop will accommodate a maximum of  25 participants. Applicants will be selected based on  background knowledge, with special preference given to those who can demonstrate an interest in application of advanced light microscopy methods to their own research.

 

Therefore we ask applicants to provide a short motivation letter (max. 1 A4) describing their experience level and qualifications and a description of the (planned) application of advanced light microscopy in their research, explaining why you would like to attend and how you think you will benefit from the course (letters to be sent to herlinde.dekeersmaecker@ugent.be or christopher.cawthorne@kuleuven.be).

Preference will also be given to those who wish to attend the whole 3-day course.

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Organizing & Scientific Committee

This course is organized by the members of Flanders BioImaging, a consortium of imaging core facilities in Flanders.

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