• The new “expansion microscopy” technique uses an expandable polymer and water to enable researchers to achieve “super-resolution” to resolve details down to about 70 nanometers laterally, compared to about 300 nanometers (violet light), the previous limit with a diffraction-limited conventional microscope, and without the slower performance of existing “super-resolution” microscopes.
  • “Expansion microscopy may provide a key tool for comprehensive, precise, circuit-wide, brain mapping,” Boyden said. The team has demonstrated the process on mouse, fruit fly, and zebrafish brains and is working with another team to apply it to human tissue.
  • Boyden adds that the process may be useful beyond the brain to other parts of the body. Many types of biological processes involve nanoscale interactions across large systems, such as cancer metastasis and immunological responses.

Share This Article