Optical microscopy methods are routinely used for spatially-resolved localization and visualization of optical contrast generating probes in various media. Nevertheless, these methods are of limited utility in their ability to analyze the dynamics, interactions, and physical environment of molecules when unassisted by spectroscopy. Imaging spectroscopy methods enable the extension of simple spatial analyses to demonstrate function, co-localization, and molecular interaction.
We are interested in combining different modes of microscopy with spectroscopic tools to better study molecular interactions. We focus on exploiting the sensitivity and specificity of fluorescent probes in an imaging mode to yield spatial, spectral, and temporally resolved information about molecular systems of interest.
Schematic of the multimode microscope. The setup is designed for maximum flexibility with different illumination (widefield transmission or epi-illumination by halogen or mercury lamp; pulsed laser for confocal illumination) and detection (true color intensity, spectra, lifetimes) possibilities.
DESCRIPTION PROJECT 1 (Master)
Rise time analysis of FRET coupled energy acceptor fluorophores
Opposed to the mainly used approach, Fluorescence Resonance Energy Transfer (FRET) will be studied from the perspective of the energy acceptor fluorophore. Further the change in energy acceptor rise time upon changing the local density of states (LDOS) will be analyzed.
DESCRIPTION PROJECT 2 (Bachelor and Master)
Alpha-synuclein protein labeling for superresolution microscopy
In this project the protein alpha-synculein will be labeled with fluorescent marker molecules that can be switched between an emitting and a nonemitting state. From a mixture of labeled and unlabeled protein alpha-synculein fibrils (diameter ~10nm) will be formed and analyzed by optical superresolution microscopy which allows imaging structures below the diffraction barrier.
For more information on these 3 projects, please contact
Christian Blum, email: email@example.com