The electron microscopy core facility provides services and expertise in all aspects of transmission and scanning electron microscopy. Services include conventional fixation and sectioning of cells and tissues, negative staining of organelles and macromolecular assemblies, shadowing of isolated protein molecules, freeze-fracture, immunolabeling, etc. Cryo-sectioning and cryo-electron microscopy are also available. Expert consultation on all aspects of experimental planning and micrograph interpretation is provided by the facility manager, Greg Hendricks.
Conventional fixation and sectioning of cells and tissues. Tissues, organelles, cell cultures, etc. are fixed with aldehydes and osmium tetroxide, dehydrated through a graded series of alcohol to remove water, and finally embedded in a plastic resin. The resin-embedded material is sectioned using either glass or diamond knives. Sections can be either cut thick (0.5 to several micrometers) for light microscopy or ultrathin (60 to 90 nm) for conventional transmission electron microscopy.