Optical microscopy serves as a standard tool in various research fields. For life sciences, it enables selective labelling of specific targets, to track their spatial organization and/or time dependence in a non-destructive manner. Various developments in the field, either in the imaging itself, sample labelling, or image analysis continuously increase the amount and accuracy of the information derived.

Despite their relative simple operation, optical microscopes contain many components, optical, mechanical and electronic. Therefore, the user should consider not only the scientific reliability of the system imaged (by imaging relevant controls, verifying different dyes – See Sample Preparation) but also the technical alignment of these different components. These considerations are of absolute necessity in order to derive conclusions based on the biology of the sample images, rather than ones reflecting the inherent technical variability. Here you can find information that can help you to determine if the phenotypes observed are independent of technical issues: If its verifying localization accuracy, laser intensity or correcting aberrations.

Remember! Always keep in mind that your image is a result of interaction between light (passing through various optical/mechanical/electronic components) and the chosen label for your target- and accordingly requires careful interpretation.

*KNIC offers a range of accessories to provide calibration data! 

Here you can find useful resources to help you determine whether the phenotypes observed are independent of technical issues: