STW has awarded an OTP grant to expand a new microscopy technique, siFLIM. This novel super-fast fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy system has been generated and tested in a collaboration involving researchers from the van Leeuwenhoek Centre for Advanced Microscopy and Delft university with industrial partners from Lambert Instruments and Dalsa.
Key to the innovation is a novel camera with high-frequency modulated gain directly on the CCD chip so that 2 images can be detected, which are separated in time by 12.5 ns (12.5 10-9 s) during a single image acquisition. With the new siFLIM technique it is possible to fully quantitatively monitor molecular conformation changes and interactions at video rate (20 Hz) directly in living cells with diffraction limited optics for the first time. The original results were published in Nature Methods in April 2016, co-authored by the Molecular Cytology group (Marieke Mastop, Joachim Goedhart, Dorus Gadella).
A €1,000,000 OTP grant proposal was awarded by STW to professor Jalink (LCAM-Netherlands Cancer Institute, coordinator and special chair Swammerdam Institute for Life Sciences), professor Gadella and dr. Sjoerd Stallinga (Delft), also involving the two companies. The grant includes a 3-year research position and budget to implement one enhanced siFLIM system at LCAM-SILS. The task of this part of the project led by Dorus Gadella, is to create a new user interface so that molecular interactions can be displayed in real time (at video rate) in living cells with high resolution, which will allow us to understand complex spatiotemporal signalling pathways underlying mammalian cell morphogenesis and migration in an unprecedented way. After implementation, we will offer open-access to this groundbreaking technology in our LCAM Functional Imaging Flagship node that is part of the Euro-BioImaging European Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures (ESFRI) large research infrastructure network.