Reduce the photobleaching and damage to living cells

A shutter is used in a fluorescence imaging system to limit the amount of fluorescent exposure of a sample under investigation. This helps to reduce sample bleaching and damage to living cells under observation. However, opening and closing a shutter takes time, time you can ill afford if you are acquiring a timelapse image sequence with strict timing intervals.

If this is a problem for you then the Improvision Micro-Shutter could offer a solution. The Improvision Micro-Shutter uses a 6mm shutter that can open and close in only 1.5ms. Tests have shown that the Improvision Micro-Shutter is 40 times faster than a built-in microscope shutter and can reduce fluorescence exposure by 40% (see this Technical note for complete details)

The Improvision Micro-Shutter has been designed by the fantastic Improvision technical team and can be controlled with any shutter controller that is designed to drive a 6mm Uniblitz-compatible shutter. However, if you are a Volocity user we recommend controlling the shutter using the Improvision Shutter Hub, which was also designed and built by those clever Improvision guys.

The Improvision Micro-Shutter is used in conjunction with the X-Cite 120 fluorescent light source from EXFO Photonics solutions Inc. I like this light source because it uses a 120 watt halide lamp that gives unequalled spectral excitation with a uniform field of view. Its Intelli-Lamptm Technology means that lamps are longer lasting and can be used in excess of 2000 hours, so it can be economical too. The X-Cite 120 connects easily to the Micro-Shutter via a 3mm liquid light guide.

The Micro-Shutter/EXFO combination is available for Zeiss, Nikon, Olympus and Leica microscopes. It makes a great addition to the latest system from Improvision, the Volocity Restoration Confocal, which is especially good at producing confocal quality images from samples that are very photosensitive, or are labelled with a probe that bleaches quickly. Obviously, using the Micro-Shutter here could be a real benefit.

If you think the Micro-Shutter could be a useful addition for your system, please contact us or your local sales representative.