Microscopy Area

Confocal Microscopy

Confocal Laser Scanning Microscopy (CLSM) is a standard technology with the following advantages over conventional widefield microscopy:

  • Removal of light from out-of-focus planes;
  • Improved lateral (XY) and axial (Z) resolution;
  • Ability to perform a series of optical sections from specimens;

The confocal microscope is a valuable tool for research because the system is able to obtain images with clarity and reasonable resolution, thus enabling 3-D reconstruction of the specimen from optical sections or series of images obtained.

The service involves the use of a latest generation Zeiss LSM980 confocal microscope with Airyscan 2 for high resolution imaging and a Leica TCS SP2 confocal microscope, both equipped with 5 laser sources at different wavelengths.

The Unit also provides equipment for sample preparation and maintenance prior to imaging, as well as resources for the data processing.

The 3D-imaging properties of the CLSM make it an ideal tool to study cell biology and life sciences.


Key applications areas include:

  • localization and co-localization in cells and tissues;
  • cytoskeleton and organelle functions;
  • vesicles trafficking;
  • membrane and ion probes;
  • cell migration and invasion;
  • bioluminescent proteins;
  • epitope tagging;
  • cellular metabolism, oxidative reactions;
  • Cytotoxicity;
  • Stem cell research;

In addition, the Unit also provides basic protocols and all reagents needed to perform manually routine histological stainings (e.g. H&E and immune staining).

Personnel of the Unit assist scientist throughout the full process of microscopy experiments: design projects, processing data and analyzing images, and interpreting and shaping final results.

To ask for the service:

  1. preliminary contact the Confocal Microscopy unit staff;
  2. fill out the online form 'Service Request' briefly illustrating the scientific problem, type and number of samples, etc.;
  3. plan a meeting with the unit staff to discuss methods, costs, timing etc.

Serena Cecchetti, ☎ +39 06 4990 2966
Francesca Spadaro, ☎ +39 06 4990 6092
Where we are: building 20, floor 2, room 6