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This Conference is FREE, advance registration is requested.

Download the Programme & Poster titles/authors

The conference programme comprises presentations by invited speakers from academia and selected professional updates from industry, there will be a ‘poster session’ of contributed papers from early career scientists who are researching novel and exciting new techniques or unique applications.



Welcome refreshments and registration


Introduction and welcome
Dr Chris Dunsby


Democratising live-cell high-speed super-resolution microscopy
Dr Ricardo Henriques, LMCB Group Leader, University College London, UK


In this talk I will present some of the high-performance open-source approaches we have developed for ImageJ, namely the SRRF and SQUIRREL approaches.

SRRF (reads as surf) is a new super-resolution method capable of enabling live-cell nanoscopy with illumination intensities orders of magnitude lower than methods such as SMLM or STED. The capacity of SRRF for low-photoxicity, allows unprecedented imaging for long acquisition times at resolution equivalent or better than SIM. We demonstrate, using SRRF, live-cell super-resolution images of microtubule, mitochondrial dynamics, the dynamic nanoscale reorganisation of HIV-1 host receptors, as well as extensive cortical actin remodelling during the formation of the immunological T-cell - MORE


Multimodal Label-free Non-linear Techniques for Quantitative Bio-Imaging
Prof Sumeet Mahajan, Professor in Molecular Biophotonics & Imaging in Chemistry, University of Southampton, UK



Sumeet is a Professor in Molecular Biophotonics & Imaging in Chemistry with a joint appointment in the Institute for Life Sciences at the University of Southampton. His group works at the life science interface. The overarching aim of the research in his group is to develop new spectroscopy and imaging techniques and apply them to extract chemical information from biological systems to understand disease processes for early, faster or more sensitive healthcare diagnostic.


sCMOS technology in Life Sciences
Dr Ruediger Bader, Photon Lines, Banbury


Scientific cameras based on scientific CMOS image sensors have evolved since their first appearance in 2010. The reason why sCMOS technology replaced EMCCD and CCD cameras in many applications, including in vivo imaging and single molecule localisation microscopy, is the ideal combination of low readout noise, high quantum efficiency (QE) and high frame rates.

A variety of sCMOS sensors provided by companies like GPixel and BAE Fairchild are built into scientific cameras varying in QE, pixel size, cooling methods and speed. Recently, advances in the manufacturing process improved the sensor QE by 10%. Further, wafer scale reverse side thinning has now been matured and has become a standard process making the first backside thinned sensors with over 90% peak QE available. 

This talk will focus on the different cameras and specifications scientists can now choose between, to match the requirements of the experimental setup. 


Probing the viscoelasticity of protein fibres with Brillouin spectroscopy
Dr Francesca Palombo, Senior Lecturer in Biomedical Spectroscopy, University of Exeter


The biomechanics of living tissues are critical to normal tissue function and disturbances in these properties are widely implicated in aging and disease. Protein fibres of the extracellular matrix (collagen and elastin) are the fundamental mechanical structures in connective tissues such as bone, cartilage and vasculature. We applied Brillouin light scattering (BLS) spectroscopy and quasistatic stress-strain testing to the study of the mechanics and structure of collagen and elastin fibres purified from connective tissues.

BLS probes mechanical properties on a microscopic scale in biological tissues and thereby providing insights into structure–function relationships under normal and pathological conditions - MORE


Refreshments in the exhibition area


Ultra-fast hybrid detectors improve imaging of free and protein-bound NAD(P)H in FLIM
Dr Elaine Blackwood, Photonic Solutions, Edinburgh, UK


FLIM is known to be highly sensitive to the metabolic state of cells as a metabolic marker. With advances in ultra-fast detector technology and timing resolution of TCSPC modules we can demonstrate how multiphoton microscopy combined with FLIM has been used to successfully image free and protein-bound forms of NADH and use these as a metabolic marker in the progression of a skin cancer lesion.


Using image-based fNIRS to assess the impact of early adversity on brain health in India
Prof John Spencer, Professor of Psychology, University of East Anglia, UK


There is a growing need to understand the global impact of poverty on early brain and behavioural development, particularly with regard to key cognitive processes that emerge in early development. One such cognitive process is visual working memory (VWM). VWM is central to daily functioning, detecting changes in the world when they occur. Here, I report findings from a study investigating the neuro-behavioural correlates of VWM conducted in Shivgarh, Uttar Pradesh, India, a region with some of the worst human developmental indictors in the world.

Functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) was used to collect neuroimaging data from the frontal cortex while infants and toddlers completed a Preferential Looking (PL) working memory task. We varied the - MORE


Integrating nutrition, psychology and neuroscience to measure infant development in The UK and Gambia
Dr Sarah Lloyd-Fox, Research Fellow, Birbeck, University of London, UK


Human brain and nervous system development during the first 1000 days is critical, risk of compromised development during this time can have a deep impact on physical growth and cognitive function into adulthood. Recent research has shown that under-nutrition in infancy is linked to lifelong effects on adult health, however we still have a poor understanding of how nutrition effects brain development during early life. Our objective is to chart brain development across different populations during this critical period.

We are testing longitudinally a total of 260 infants (60 in the UK and 200 in The Gambia) from birth to 2 years, with a battery of neurocognitive fNIRS, EEG, eyetracking and behavioural clinic and home assessments - MORE


Lunch Break


Poster Session - Haldane Room


How can rigorous simulation advance optical coherence tomography in biomedical imaging?
Dr Peter Munro, Royal Society University Research Fellow, University College London, UK


Mathematical models of image formation have been important in the development of mainstream medical imaging techniques. They assist image interpretation and in designing and optimising the imaging system. Image formation in optical coherence tomography (OCT) has traditionally been modelled using approximations which, whilst appropriate for addressing particular questions, fundamentally limit the degree of realism of the resulting models and, therefore, the range of question they can address. In contrast, the current breadth of advanced applications and novel implementations of OCT requires a highly realistic model of image formation as a research tool - MORE


Imaging immune cell dynamics
Dr Leo Carlin, Group Leader BAIR, Beatson Institute, UK


The immune system has been implicated in almost every stage of cancer development from initiation and growth to recurrence, invasion and metastasis. The role of immunity in cancer is complicated as immune cells can kill cancer cells and stabilise the primary tumour to help prevent spread but they can also produce factors that supress anti-cancer immunity and benefit tumour growth and dissemination. Our group has a particular interest in the lung both as a site of primary tumour development and as a target of metastasis. We use laser-scanning microscopy of the live mouse lung in vivo and ex vivo, agarose inflated precision cut lung slices with multicolour labelling by fluorescent antibodies and dyes, transgenic reporter mice and adoptive transfer of cells in combination with multicolour flow cytometry to investigate the regulation and behaviour of lung leukocytes - MORE


Multispectral Analyser Filters for use in Agricultural Monitoring
Samuel Thienel, Laser Components (UK), Chelmsford


This talk will explore methods of data collection necessary to calculate the Normalised Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) over large areas, and how this measurement can be useful in mapping healthy crop growth in large scale agriculture.

Focus will be centred on the application of optical systems in multispectral analysis for detecting the presence of chlorophyll, as well as the specific production techniques used for optical interference filters tailored for this application.


In room break


Pragmatic imaging: delivering advanced microscopy in a multi-user facility
Dr Kevin O'Holleran, Director of Light Microscopy, University of Cambridge, UK


Fluorescence microscopy has experienced wonderful advances in the last few decades and progress shows little sign of slowing. At the Cambridge Advanced Imaging Centre we are tasked with developing and making available the most promising new techniques for a diverse community of life scientists. This task in itself is challenging, not only requiring techniques to be adapted and improved to work in real scenarios but also to be made robust and accessible. In this context I will present our recent work in improving superresolution for multi-user access. This work aims to improve single molecule imaging so that experiments can be performed on living organisms and over larger volumes beyond the coverslip interface. I will discuss our recent results on revealing transcription factor dynamics in living drosophila tisse and on charting 3D DNA structure in fixed spermatocyte nuclei - MORE


Post-processing analytics and the information content of single-molecule localisation microscopy, SMLM
Dr Dylan Owen, Lecturer, King’s College London, UK


Since its inception, SMLM has become increasingly popular in biology labs around the world. Many of the key applications are to do with analysing the nanoscale clustering of proteins (especially at the cell surface) and investigating the structure of cytoskeletal elements. Typically, such analysis is done by reconstructing a super-resolved image from the individual frames (the raw data) and consequently, several tools now exist to quantify the quality of such reconstructions. Here, we present statistical methods for analysing the coordinates of imaged fluorophores without having to reconstruct super-resolved, pixelated images. We show that biologically-relevant descriptors can be extracted from far less information (hence acquisition time) than are required to reconstruct an actual image. We demonstrate these post-processing - MORE


Closing comments


Poster award in the exhibition area.


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Dr Christopher Dunsby, Photonics, Department of Physics and the Division of Experimental Medicine in the Department of Medicine. Imperial College London.

Dr Ilias Tachtsidis, Biomedical Optics Research Laboratory, University College London.

Dr Pete Tomlins,
Centre for Diagnostic and Oral Sciences. Queen Mary, University of London.

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