Microscopy: A new, more comprehensive approach

A team from the Pasteur Institute of Lille is at the origin of a world prowess. The foundation’s researchers have performed a technological tour de force by developing a novel microscopy method that makes it possible to obtain a very large amount of information on the same sample.

Researchers at the Pasteur Institute in Lille need access to the properties of matter, whether inanimate or living, such as cells. Thus, they use microscopy techniques on a daily basis to visualize objects that are barely perceptible or invisible to the naked eye.

Three main types of microscopy exist independently. In recent years, it has been possible to couple these technologies together. Today, by correlating these three types of microscopy on the same sample, researchers at the Pasteur Institute of Lille have succeeded in a real tour de force.

This new method, called CLAFEM for Correlative Light Atomic Force Electron Microscopy, allows the obtaining of diverse and more detailed information on both live and inorganic samples.

Such an approach could be used to characterize the effects of therapeutic compounds, for example. Understanding the structure of living bacteria, measuring their adhesion and behaviour in cells, will help us to develop new treatments,”explains Franck Lafont, director of the Cellular and Physical Microbiology team at the Institut Pasteur de Lille. Studies are already underway on the mechanical properties of cells during infectious, neurodegenerative or cancerous processes.

CLAFEM will allow a better understanding of how cells are affected by changes in their biophysical properties (rigidity, elasticity, adhesion, etc.) in pathologies and during aging and thus prevent the consequences will contribute to a longer life. To continue to make such discoveries, researchers need your support. If discoveries in scientific research are made every day, it is also thanks to you and your donations.

Original article: VMPL6

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