Product News: The New A1 Series – Bringing Imaging to Life

30 Jan 2008

Even the most rapid biological processes can now be captured at ultra high resolution as a result of the launch of a new range of confocal laser scanner systems by Nikon Instruments. Two models are available; the fully automated A1 and the high specification A1R.

The A1 is Nikon's powerful new fully-automated confocal imaging system capable of capturing high-quality confocal images of cells and molecular events at high speed and enhanced sensitivity. The A1 utilises conventional paired galvanometers producing high resolution images (up to 4096 x 4096 pixels). Ideal for high resolution live cell fluorescence imaging, the A1 has been designed with groundbreaking new optical and electronic technologies to provide unprecedented system quality and flexibility.

The high specification A1R features an innovative hybrid resonant-non-resonant scanning system creating a powerful new tool for live cell imaging. The scanners are used in tandem; the resonant scanner capable of capturing images at 30fps (512 x 512 pixels), is employed to capture images whilst the non-resonant scanner photoactivates or photobleaches the specimen. This facilitates ultra-high-speed imaging with unsurpassed image quality, up to 230fps (512 x 64 pixels). Furthermore, it offers the ability to perform time-lapse imaging and simultaneous PA-GFP or FRAP with reduced photobleaching and phototoxicity.

Nikon's increased light detection efficiency provides high image quality - allowing brighter images, minimising laser exposure intensity and reducing damage to cells.

As with all Nikon's imaging systems, the A1 system utilises NIS-Elements software for image capture, processing and analysis. This means that techniques such as, confocal, TIRF and widefield imaging can all be performed on the same microscope with the same software. The system is provided, as standard, with the analysis software for FRAP and FRET.

The new systems are a natural complement to the recently launched Ti inverted microscope, particularly when coupled with Nikon's patented Perfect Focus System, essential for eliminating focus drift. Together they set a new standard for advanced time-lapse studies of rapid cellular interactions to literally bring biological imaging to life.