Navigation Links
Potential leap forward in electron microscopy
Date:10/6/2009

Results: MIT electrical engineers have proposed a new scheme that can overcome a critical limitation of high-resolution electron microscopes: they cannot be used to image living cells because the electrons destroy the samples. The researchers suggest using a quantum mechanical measurement technique that allows electrons to sense objects remotely without ever hitting the imaged objects, thus avoiding damage.

Why it matters: A non-invasive electron microscope could shed light on fundamental questions about life and matter, allowing researchers to observe molecules inside a living cell without disturbing them. If successful, such microscopes would surmount what Nobel laureate Dennis Gabor concluded in 1956 was the fundamental limitation of electron microscopy: "The destruction of the object by the exploring agent."

How it works: Traditional electron microscopes use a particle beam of electrons, instead of light, to image specimens. These beams offer extremely high resolution, up to 0.2 to 10 nanometers 10 to 1,000 times greater than a traditional light microscope.

In contrast, with the new proposed quantum mechanical setup, electrons would not directly strike the object being imaged. Instead, an electron would flow around one of two rings, arranged one above the other. The rings would be close enough together that the electron could hop easily between them. However, if an object (such as a cell) were placed between the rings, it would prevent the electron from hopping, and the electron would be trapped in one ring.

This setup would scan one "pixel" of the specimen at a time, putting them all together to create the full image. Whenever the electron is trapped, the system would know that there is a dark pixel in that spot.

Next steps: Assistant Professor Mehmet Fatih Yanik, senior author of the paper, says he expects the work "will likely ignite experimental efforts around the world for its realization, with perhaps the first prototype appearing in five years or so."

Though technical challenges need to be overcome (such as preventing the charged electron from interacting with other metals in the microscope), Yanik believes that eventually such a microscope could achieve single-nanometer resolution. That level of resolution would allow scientists to view molecules such as enzymes and nucleic acids inside living cells.


'/>"/>

Contact: Jen Hirsch
jfhirsch@mit.edu
617-253-1682
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology technology :

1. Systems Medicine (SM), a Subsidiary of Cell Therapeutics, Inc. (CTI), Announces Execution of CRADA with NCI/NIH to Develop Potential Cancer Treatments Targeting the Insulin Growth Factor (IGF) Pathway
2. Study Published in Clinical Cancer Research Confirms Potential Of Peregrines Bavituximab Combined With Radiation In Lung Cancer
3. Gladstone scientists uncover potential mechanism of memory loss in Alzheimers disease
4. New Data Presented on Immunocytokine Fusion Protein Further Supports Broad Anti-Cancer Potential Of Peregrines Anti-PS Technology Platform
5. Pharmaceutical Product Launch: Commercially Focused R&D Increases Drugs Market Potential
6. Agendia Acquires Rights to the Discovery of a Major Drug Resistance Mechanism in Breast Cancer Potentially Leading to a Herceptin(R) Sensitivity Test
7. AEterna Zentaris to Further Develop Three Follow-up Multi-targeted Cytotoxic Candidates to AEZS-112 as Potential Novel Cancer Treatment
8. Lexicon Files Investigational New Drug Application for LX1032 as a Potential Treatment for Carcinoid Syndrome
9. Discovery of creator gene for cerebral cortex points to potential stem cell treatments
10. Research Using Thermo Fisher Scientific RNA-Interference Technology Unveils Potential New Targets for HIV Drugs
11. Study by Leading Economist Identifies Potential for $378 Billion of Savings From Follow On Biologics
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/31/2016)... ... , ... Scientists at two major cancer research centers say older patients who ... who are younger. Surviving Mesothelioma has just published an article on the new research. ... Stanford Universities analyzed data from the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) database to ...
(Date:5/31/2016)... ... , ... The Academy of Model Aeronautics is thrilled to announce a new ... through Labor Day 2016. Bill Chaffee’s Boeing P-12B will be exhibited thanks to a ... first place for Senior Scale Model at the 1930 National Airplane Model League of ...
(Date:5/27/2016)... ... 2016 , ... PBI-Gordon Corporation is pleased to announce Dave Loecke has accepted ... career with PBI-Gordon, Dave has served in a wide variety of roles. His most ... and launch of many of PBI-Gordon’s most successful products. , “Dave has been essential ...
(Date:5/27/2016)... 2016 At present, the Biotech sphere ... space know that volatility is what makes this industry interesting ... Synta Pharmaceuticals Corp. (NASDAQ: SNTA ), CTI BioPharma ... LPTN ), and Heat Biologics Inc. (NASDAQ: ... technical alerts for these stocks at: http://www.activewallst.com/register/ ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
(Date:4/26/2016)... Research and Markets has announced ... 2016-2020"  report to their offering.  , ,     (Logo: ... analysts forecast the global multimodal biometrics market to ... period 2016-2020.  Multimodal biometrics is being ... the healthcare, BFSI, transportation, automotive, and government for ...
(Date:4/13/2016)... CHICAGO , April 13, 2016  IMPOWER physicians ... are setting a new clinical standard in telehealth ... By leveraging the higi platform, IMPOWER patients can ... weight, pulse and body mass index, and, when they ... quick and convenient visit to a local retail location ...
(Date:3/22/2016)... 22, 2016 According ... Market for Consumer Industry by Type (Image, Motion, ... (Communication & IT, Entertainment, Home Appliances, & ... to 2022", published by MarketsandMarkets, the market ... reach USD 26.76 Billion by 2022, at ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):