Core Imaging Module
The Imaging Core supports the research of CVS faculty with access to equipment and highly trained staff for histology, human and animal imaging, and adaptive optics for psychophysics and retinal imaging.
Facilities and Resources
The Imaging Core is sub-divided into three facilities:
The Adaptive Optics (AO) Facility builds and maintains cutting-edge instrumentation that is not available commercially utilizing adaptive optics for visual psychophysics and cellular-scale retinal imaging. The core group of optical engineers designs, builds and maintains custom-developed AO devices in multiple laboratories in CVS for research both in humans and animal models, interacting with the instrumentation and computer cores to develop fully functional equipment and support the research objectives of the users.
The Histology/Microscopy Facility supports brain and ocular tissue harvesting, processing, staining and microscopic examination (qualitative and quantitative). This facility provides a spacious and well-equipped shared histology laboratory as well as guidance in advanced histology methods and microscopy.
The histology core manages dedicated space, equipment, tools and reagents for:
- perfusion, dissection, and sectioning of tissue from large and small animals (cat, monkey, mouse, rat)
- slicing and cyro-sectioning equipment for tissue processing and slide mounting for histology
- immunohistochemistry and electron microscopy and frozen (-20 C) and cold (4C) storage for slides and mounted tissue
- Imaging capabilities include Olympus BX53 microscope with motorized stage and Neurolucida software for high-resolution morphological reconstruction and analysis, as well as imaging in brightfield, darkfield and fluorescent light
The facility provides access to training and scheduling, as well as assistance on specific projects.
The In Vivo Imaging Facility provides access to instruments and expert advisors for anterior segment, retinal, and brain imaging in addition to functional assessments of vision through commercial or dedicated laboratory instrumentation.
Instruments for eye and brain imaging include:
- a Heidelberg HRA Spectralis+OCT
- EEG system
- Micron III mouse imaging system
Research Enabled by the Module
Each of the three facilities of the Imaging Module provided significant support to multiple projects within CVS. The following selections highlight recent successes:
The Adaptive Optics (AO) Facility has recently contributed to development of new AO systems. Those include:
- A new single photon adaptive optics setup for mouse imaging to relieve provided with novel methods for beam steering and phase imaging of minimal contrast organs in mouse retina
- Flood illumination channel in a scanning AO systems that permits independently steered high-resolution stimulation of primate fovea and also be selectiv activation of single foveal retinal ganglion cells that contain an optogenetic agent (CatCH)
- Two photon laser channel in an AO system is to perform selective photoreceptor lesions , psychophysical experiments of vision restoration and subretinal implantation of photoreceptor precursors
- Multi-channel adaptive AO visual simulator provided with spatial light modulator, deformable mirror and optotunable lenses for testing visual performance with new optical corrections of myopia and presbyopia.
The Histology/Microscopy Facility has been used, among others, in the assessment of the structure of microglial cells in both the brain and retina of mice, preparations of wildtype and transgenic mice retinae in multi-electrode stimulation/registration or examination of retinal microvascular structure.
The In Vivo Imaging Facility provides support in pre-operative guidance and planning of:
- photoreceptor lesions and subretinal injection of photoreceptor precursors
- labeling of superior colliculus projecting ganglion cells from AAV-retro viral vector retrograde transport of fluorophores
- or imaging of mice retina as a benchmark to histological sections in studies of vascular derived endothelin receptor A and transcriptional control of retinal ganglion cell death after axonal injury
Imaging Module In Numbers
- Contributed to 63 publications
- To be used by 17 of the 21 participating investigators in the next funding period