Because of their non-invasive effect on living systems, light microscopy and spectroscopy have been the workhorses for studies of structures and functions at the cellular, sub-cellular and molecular levels for almost a century.
However, many challenging questions of molecular and cellular biology remain beyond their conventional capabilities. The temporal and spatial resolutions, the labeling and contrast methods of conventional microscopy and spectroscopy pose fundamental limits for investigating the smallest and fastest puzzling mysteries of life.
The core research of our group is the design, development and validation of novel optical and analytical tools that allow the modern biologists to peer inside living cells and organisms with unprecedented temporal-spatial resolutions and minimal invasivity.
This goal can be achieved only working across many disciplines, from physics to engineering, from computer science to biology. Our projects want to synergicaly integrate novel contrast imaging mechanisms, labeling probes, optical architectures and computational approaches that can be readily adopted by IIT's biologists and researchers all over the world.
Time-Resolved STED Microscope: a beam scanning system able to tune spatial resolution from diffraction-limit (confocal microscopy) to few tens of nanometers (STED and gated-STED microscopy). Both the confocal and STED modalities can be combined with fluorescent lifetime imaging (FLIM) and fluorescence correlation spectroscopy (FCS).
Carma Microscope: a beam scanning system with open optical architecture, FPGA-based data-acquisition and instrument control card and open data-visualization and -processing software. The system is ideal for prototyping novel optical tools.
The laboratories are located at the NIkon Center@IIT.
- Visual Geometry and Modelling Laboratory, IIT (Dr. Alessio del Bue);
- Nanoscopy and NIC@IIT, IIT (Prof. Alberto Diaspro);
- Nano-Immunology, Weatherall Institute of Molecular Medicine, Oxford University (Prof. Christian Eggeling)
- Dipartment of Electronics and Bioengineering, Politecnico di Milano (Prof. Alberto Tosi)