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Light-sheet microscopy for everyone? Experience of building an OpenSPIM to study flatworm development.

Girstmair, J; Zakrzewski, A; Lapraz, F; Handberg-Thorsager, M; Tomancak, P; Pitrone, PG; Simpson, F; (2016) Light-sheet microscopy for everyone? Experience of building an OpenSPIM to study flatworm development. BMC Developmental Biology , 16 , Article 22. 10.1186/s12861-016-0122-0. Green open access

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Abstract

Background: Selective plane illumination microscopy (SPIM a type of light-sheet microscopy) involves focusing a thin sheet of laser light through a specimen at right angles to the objective lens. As only the thin section of the specimen at the focal plane of the lens is illuminated, out of focus light is naturally absent and toxicity due to light (phototoxicity) is greatly reduced enabling longer term live imaging. OpenSPIM is an open access platform (Pitrone et al. 2013 and OpenSPIM.org) created to give new users step-by-step instructions on building a basic configuration of a SPIM microscope, which can in principle be adapted and upgraded to each laboratory’s own requirements and budget. Here we describe our own experience with the process of designing, building, configuring and using an OpenSPIM for our research into the early development of the polyclad flatworm Maritigrella crozieri – a non-model animal. Results: Our OpenSPIM builds on the standard design with the addition of two colour laser illumination for simultaneous detection of two probes/molecules and dual sided illumination, which provides more even signal intensity across a specimen. Our OpenSPIM provides high resolution 3d images and time lapse recordings, and we demonstrate the use of two colour lasers and the benefits of two color dual-sided imaging. We used our microscope to study the development of the embryo of the polyclad flatworm M. crozieri. The capabilities of our microscope are demonstrated by our ability to record the stereotypical spiral cleavage pattern of M. crozieri with high-speed multi-view time lapse imaging. 3D and 4D (3D + time) reconstruction of early development from these data is possible using image registration and deconvolution tools provided as part of the open source Fiji platform. We discuss our findings on the pros and cons of a self built microscope. Conclusions: We conclude that home-built microscopes, such as an OpenSPIM, together with the available open source software, such as MicroManager and Fiji, make SPIM accessible to anyone interested in having continuous access to their own light-sheet microscope. However, building an OpenSPIM is not without challenges and an open access microscope is a worthwhile, if significant, investment of time and money. Multi-view 4D microscopy is more challenging than we had expected. We hope that our experience gained during this project will help future OpenSPIM users with similar ambitions.

Type: Article
Title: Light-sheet microscopy for everyone? Experience of building an OpenSPIM to study flatworm development.
Location: England
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1186/s12861-016-0122-0
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12861-016-0122-0
Language: English
Additional information: Open Access This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made.
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences > Div of Biosciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences > Div of Biosciences > Genetics, Evolution and Environment
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1505032
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