AUBURN – An optical microscope system developed at Auburn University and produced and sold by CytoViva Inc. has been selected for a Nano 50 Award by NASA Tech Briefs publishers. The annual competition recognizes the most exceptional new products in the nanotechnology field.
Vitaly Vodyanoy, a professor in the AU College of Veterinary Medicine, built the prototype that CytoViva licensed and further developed as the Dual Mode Fluorescence, or DMF, module. It enables researchers to observe unaltered, living cells in extremely fine detail and without delays or extra steps for processing, which are typical of current microscopes.
“It is attached to an existing research microscope, so samples are viewed directly through the microscope eyepiece and are captured using a standard microscope camera,” Vodyanoy said. “It extends light microscopy, offering a unique view of live cells and cell processes while they are occurring.”
The patent-pending imaging system is being used by a wide range of researchers involved in infectious diseases, tissue engineering and drug delivery. Researchers can watch a fluorescently labeled drug enter a cell, be transported and observe the results on the cellular physiology and morphology.
“This has a profound impact on the quality and convenience of data collection,” said Chuck Ludwig, president of CytoViva. “The new tool eliminates traditional, computer-enhanced overlay when imaging fluorescently labeled nanoparticles in unlabeled cells, tissue or biopolymers.”
The Nano 50 Awards will be presented during the NASA Tech Briefs’ National Nano Engineering Conference in Boston in November.
CytoViva Inc., an Auburn, Ala.-based company, is a subsidiary of Aetos Technologies Inc., a privately held technology development company founded to bridge the gap between university-based research and the commercial market. Further information on the CytoViva products may be found at www.cytoviva.com.