Wymke Ockenga

Wymke Ockenga

Wymke Ockenga studied Human Biology at the Philipps-Universität in Marburg. Her main subjects were cell biology and biological chemistry. She did her diploma thesis at the Institute for Cytobiology and Cytopathologie and is currently working as a PhD student at the Justus-Liebig-Universität in Gießen.

A Brief History of Light Microscopy – From the Medieval Reading Stone to Super-Resolution

The history of microscopy begins in the Middle Ages. As far back as the 11th century, plano-convex lenses made of polished beryl were used in the Arab world as reading stones to magnify manuscripts.…

How to Clean Microscope Optics

Clean microscope optics are essential for obtaining good microscope images. If they are dirty, the microscope should be cleaned to avoid a loss of quality. If you decide to do this yourself, you…
Widefield fluorescence image of brest carcinoma tumor cells expressing GFP tagged cell adhesion Molecule CD44 that is expressed on the cell membrane, imagined in TIRF.

Total Internal Reflection Fluorescence (TIRF) Microscopy

Total internal reflection fluorescence (TIRF) is a special technique in fluorescence microscopy developed by Daniel Axelrod at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor in the early 1980s. TIRF microscopy…
TIRF Image of Tubulin

Applications of TIRF Microscopy in Life Science Research

The special feature of TIRF microscopy is the employment of an evanescent field for fluorophore excitation. Unlike standard widefield fluorescence illumination procedures with arc lamps, LEDs or…

Optical Contrast Methods

Optical contrast methods give the potential to easily examine living and colorless specimens. Different microscopic techniques aim to change phase shifts caused by the interaction of light with the…

Phase Contrast

Phase contrast is an optical contrast technique for making unstained phase objects (e.g. flat cells) visible under the light microscope. Cells that appear inconspicuous and transparent in brightfield…
Neurons, imaged in DIC

Differential Interference Contrast (DIC)

Differential interference contrast (DIC) microscopy is a good alternative to brightfield microscopy for gaining proper images of unstained specimens that often only provide a weak image in…

An Introduction to Fluorescence

Fluorescence is widely used in microscopy and an important tool for observing the distribution of specific molecules. Most molecules in cells do not fluoresce. They therefore have to be marked with…

Effects of light on atoms and molecules - fluorescence and phosphorescence

Molecules and atoms can exist in different quantum states. These states are dedicated to different energy levels; the quantum state with the lowest energy is called the ground state. Every state of…

Polarization Contrast

Polarization microscopy is routinely applied in material sciences and geology to identify minerals on the basis of characteristic refraction properties and colors. In biology, polarization microscopy…

Fluorescence in Microscopy

Fluorescence microscopy is a special form of light microscopy. It uses the ability of fluorochromes to emit light after being excited with light of a certain wavelength. Proteins of interest can be…
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