Zeiss unveils PALM MicroBeam Laser Microdissection instrument

02 Apr 2007
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Carl Zeiss has unveiled the PALM MicroBeam laser microdissection system, the only instrument capable of simultaneous visualisation and microdissection under multichannel fluorescence illumination and extended focus. Built upon the Zeiss Axio Observer research grade inverted microscope, the PALM MicroBeam employs PALM’s exclusive LPC (laser pressure catapulting) technology for contamination-free specimen acquisition.

Advanced fluorescence imaging is central to the characterisation of biological specimens and the new system is ideally suited to live-cell applications. The PALM RoboSoftware may be used to generate single or multichannel images for up to five different wavelengths while the Axio Observer’s high performance filters enable up to 70% higher excitation intensities and allow the use of phase contrast and differential interference contrast (DIC) illumination. Higher excitation intensity also allows the PALM MicroBeam to reduce exposure times by up to 50%, which guarantees minimum risk of bleaching and maximum protection for fragile living cells.

The PALM MicroBeam also overcomes depth of field limitations common to most other manufacturers’ systems. The Extended Focus module within the Zeiss AxioVision software records a series of images at different focus position through the specimen before automatically extracting the sharp details from each individual frame to calculate a final image that is contrast rich and sharp in every detail.

“The combination of fluorescence imaging, extended focus and non-contact, contamination-free isolation of tissue samples or living cells offers researchers the most extensive capabilities for the molecular analysis of DNA, RNA, proteins and cells in the microdissection market,” says Oliver Clarke, PALM product specialist at Zeiss UK. “Combined with the PALM MicroBeam’s automated image archiving, researchers can maintain sample custody at all times while operating with consummate precision, speed, versatility and flexibility.”

The PALM MicroBeam takes advantage of the Axio Observer platform by offering a flexible upgrade path through a wide range of options and modules, such as Zeiss AxioCam digital cameras, laser tweezers and micromanipulation accessories. It is also fully integrated into the Zeiss AxioVision suite of imaging software.

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