Buchmann Institute for Molecular Life Sciences
Modern 3D electron microscopy methods cover a large variety of applications at different resolutions. They serve to further elucidate the structure of macromolecular complexes or to visualize the cellular structure of larger tissue compartments. These methods will be demonstrated using three examples of biological research.
First, using cryo-electron tomography (cryoET) and sub tomogram averaging we were able to resolve the mouse liver desmosomal ultrastructure. The cryoET data from these experiments yielded insights into the native organization of epithelial cell junctions of mammalian desmosomes.
Second, our developments in sub-nanometer cryo tomography will be presented. By optimizing sample preparation, tomogram acquisition and post processing techniques we were able to visualize secondary structural features of tobacco mosaic virus coat proteins for the first time.
Third, our developments using FIB/SEM for 3D electron microscopy will be discussed. The application of FIB/SEM in conjunction with a versatile correlative light EM (CLEM) approach with high spatial precision will be presented along with the analysis of complete parts of the C.elegans nerve cord structure and its synaptic vesicles.