4Pi microscopy of quantum dot-labeled cellular structures.

Document Type


Publication Date



Cell-Line, Microscopy-Confocal, Microscopy-Fluorescence-Multiphoton, Microtubules, Mitochondria, Quantum-Dots, Reproducibility-of-Results

JAX Source

J Struct Biol 2006 Dec; 156(3):517-23.


The most prominent restrictions of fluorescence microscopy are the limited resolution and the finite signal. Established conventional, confocal, and multiphoton microscopes resolve at best approximately 200nm in the focal plane and only 500nm in depth. Additionally, organic fluorophores and fluorescent proteins are bleached after 10(4)-10(5) excitation cycles. To overcome these restrictions, we synergistically combine the 3- to 7-fold improved axial resolution of 4Pi microscopy with the greatly enhanced photostability of semiconductor quantum dots. Co-localization studies of immunolabeled microtubules and mitochondria demonstrate the feasibility of this approach for routine biological measurements. In particular, we visualize the three-dimensional entanglement of the two networks with unprecedented detail.