Professors Secure Grant For $100,000 Microscope
Madison, NJ (March 14, 2008) – Dr. Patricia Melloy, Dr. Michael Avaltroni, and Dr. Eric Iannacone recently secured a grant for a custom-made Leica DM5500 microscope, worth about $100,000. The microscope provides the science departments at the College at Florham of Fairleigh Dickinson University with exciting new capabilities.
Melloy, Assistant Professor of Cell Biology, was the principal investigator (PI), and fellow professors Avaltroni and Iannacone were co-PIs.
The microscope, which is very similar to the Leica model on the international space station, can, through its fluorescence microscopy capabilities, provide the unique opportunity for the viewer to see various fluorescence probes in a particular specimen. These probes can be followed in live cells. This gives the viewer increased ability to see detail over the traditional method of using dyes with a sample. The traditional method stains a dead sample of cells.
The Leica fluorescence microscopy system has several advantages over the traditional microscopes. Due to the microscope's ability to work without dyes, living cells can be studied. The use of living cells opens up the possibility for more in-depth study. Also, the microscope's computer can enhance imaging by reducing the blur that naturally occurs when looking into a microscope. The blur is caused by parts of the sample which are not in focus, either in front of or behind the area of the slide that is in focus.
Select student who assist professors in research projects will have the opportunity to use the microscope in those scenarios.