Top Tips For Conducting a Successful Live Cell Imaging Experiment
Live cell imaging offers an unprecedentedly clear look at fast-paced biological processes. Thanks to recent advances in technology, it’s becoming more and more popular. But it isn’t infallible, and it’s always most effective when researchers are prepared.
Without preparation, researchers using live cell imaging techniques risk losing data and generating misleading results. Most importantly, though, they also risk wasting precious time.
Read on, and we’ll help you make sure your research produces results you know you can trust.
Maintain the Right Environment
Before you start to conduct your research, make sure you’ve created the right environmental conditions for your samples. The conditions you need will depend on the samples you are using, so make sure you know what you need before you start!
You need to make sure that you have the right temperature, humidity and gas levels. If you don’t get the conditions right, your cells will weaken. This will make it harder for you to get accurate data from your experiment.
You can use an incubator or chamber to maintain stable environmental conditions. You should also consider using air conditioning or dehumidifiers to keep the room temperature and humidity at a stable level during your experiment.
Any live cell imaging experiment needs to take precautions against cross-culture contamination. Cross-culture contamination can happen when foreign cells are introduced to the cells you want to observe. This usually happens via unclean equipment.
Before you start your experiment, make sure to sterilize any pipettes and open devices. This will minimize the risk of outside cells finding their way into your experiment, potentially jeopardizing your results.
You should also try to move your cell as little as possible during the experiment. The more you move it, the greater the risk of contamination.
During live cell imaging, you’ll need to use a light source to get clear images of your cell samples. But too much light exposure can cause phototoxicity in your cells.
Phototoxicity can cause cell damage or even cell death, putting your experiment at risk. It can also cause cells to behave in unusual ways, which may give you less useful results.
Ultraviolet light is phototoxic, so you should avoid UV light sources if you can. Turning off the light source when not capturing images can also reduce cell exposure to light.
And as a rule, it’s best to make sure you have the most advanced imaging tools available. They’re built to prevent phototoxicity and give you more reliable data.
Success in Live Cell Imaging
Live cell imaging is at the forefront of cell research in almost every scientific field. With the right tools and the right preparation, you can conduct research at the cutting edge of cellular biology. Who knows what biological processes your work will uncover?
If you liked this article on science and technology, why not check out more of our posts? We’re full of great ideas to help you make the most of your research!