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Platform for Imaging by Microscopy

Seeing the light

crédit-Harvard Stem Cell Institute-2017

The Platform for Imaging by Microscopy (PIM) offers a wide range of light microscopy instruments and image analysis tools, consultations, training, and support to the research community at the CHU Sainte-Justine Mother-Child Research Hospital (affiliated with Université de Montréal), as well as collaborators and external clients.

Technologies offered

  1. Confocal microscopy, laser scanning and spinning disk – high resolution, optical sectioning
  2. FRAP (Fluorescence Recovery after Photobleaching) – molecular dynamics of defined sample regions
  3. Laser Micro-Dissection (LMD) – precise cutting of defined regions of microscopic specimen
  4. Live cell imaging – environmental control (temperature, CO2) for long-term imaging of cells, organoids, embryos
  5. Micro-manipulation, micro-injection – precise mechanical sample manipulation and injection 
  6. Monochrome and color detection – fast, light-sensitive cameras and detectors
  7. Multi-photon microscopy – powerful laser of long wavelength to penetrate deep into tissue
  8. Spectral imaging – free choice of emission wavelength without filters
  9. Stereo-microscope/macroscope for large samples
  10. Super-resolution microscopy – STED (stimulated emission-depletion) on one laser scanning confocal to go beyond limit of resolution
  11. Total Internal Reflection Microscopy (TIRF) – imaging a very thin layer 
  12. Transmitted light and fluorescence
  13. Upright and inverted configurations
  14. White light laser – free choice of excitation wavelength

Which technology can be done on which instrument?

  SD-TIRF SP8 SP8-STED SP8-MP LMD DM6-1F DM6-2H DMi8-1 DMi8-2 DMi8-3 m Stereo
Confocal SD LS LS LS              
Spectral   + + +              
White light laser     +                
Multi-photon       +              
TIRF +                    
Super-resolution     +                
FRAP + + + +              
LMD         +            
Micro-injection                   +  
Live cell + (+) (+)         (+) (+)    
Detection (monoch/color) M M M M C, M M C M M C, M C, M
Fluorescence + + + + + +   + + + +
Macroscope                     +
Stand inv inv inv upr upr upr upr inv inv inv upr

Technical details for each microscope

SD-TIRF: Leica/Quorum VisiScope 4 Elements

Inverted fluorescence microscope on a Leica DMi8 stand offering spinning disk confocal microscopy (Yokogawa CSU X-1 confocal head with Yokogawa filter wheel), TIRF light path (VisiTIRF), and FRAP technology (VisiFRAP). Detection with sensitive and fast cameras (Hamamatsu ImageEM X2 EM-CCD for SD confocal, Orca Flash 4.0 sCMOS for TIRF or confocal). Automatic focus stabilization (Leica AFC). Environmental control for live cell imaging via a temperature-controlled box around the microscope and a stage-top incubator for CO2 and humidity control.


10x HC PL APO 10x/0.45
20x HC PL APO 20x/0.80
40x N PL L 40x/0.55 CORR
63x/oil HC PL APO 63x/1.47 OIL CORR TIRF
100x/oil HC PL APO 100x/1.47 OIL CORR TIRF

Lasers for confocal and TIRF excitation:

405 nm for blue emitters
445 nm for cyan emitters (only SD confocal lightpath)
488 nm for green emitters
561 nm for green emitters
640 nm for far-red emitters

SP8: Leica TCS SP8 laser scanning confocal microscope

Laser scanning confocal microscope (Leica TCS SP8) on an inverted stand, fully motorized stage, fast z movement (Leica Super Z Galvo stage). Resonant scanner (8 Hz) for fast scan times and lower photo-toxicity or bleaching. Integrated deconvolution (Leica HyVolution). Five internal detectors (two HyD high-sensitivity, three PMT), one transmitted light detector (PMT). Environmental control (temperature, CO2, humidity) possible through a mobile stage-top incubator.


10x HC PL APO 10x/0.40 CS2
20x HC PL APO 20x/0.75 CS2
40x HCX PL APO 40x/0.85 CORR CS,0.11-
63x/oil HC PL APO 63x/1.40 OIL CS2

Lasers for fluorescence excitation:

405 nm for blue emitters
488 nm for green emitters
552 nm for red emitters
638 nm for far-red emitters

More to come


Platform Manager
Elke Küster-Schöck 
514 345-4931, extension 5231

Gilles Hickson
Graziella Di Cristo

Representative – Biosecurity and Common Equipment
François Fontaine
514 345-4931, extension 6700

Usage request

Please fill this online form for any usage request
We will then contact you to arrange for a short consultation to discuss your imaging needs and set up training as needed.

Rules and booking calender

Rules to come.

Financial partners

  • CHU Sainte-Justine Foundation
  • Canada Foundation for Innovation 
  • Leica Microsystems

About this page
Updated on 8/25/2017
Created on 8/14/2017
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