Light Microscopy Core Facility


The Light Microscopy facility in the Cell and Tissue Imaging Center is a shared resource open to all St. Jude researchers. The facility is staffed by professional PhD-level scientists who are available to assist and train St. Jude scientists in all aspects of imaging-based research.

Consultation on experimental design, image acquisition, image analysis, quantification, presentation and publication is available and encouraged before beginning new projects. Services are heavily subsidized to advance discovery.

Our technology, training and analysis capabilities facilitate research in diverse biological areas, allowing investigators to harness new approaches and image samples ranging from single molecules to ex vivo tissue.


  • Confocal microscopy, point-scanning and spinning disk (CLSM)
  • Fluorescence correlation spectroscopy (FCS)
  • Fluorescence recovery after photobleaching (FRAP)
  • Fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET)
  • Frequency domain fluorescence lifetime imaging (FLIM)
  • Ion imaging
  • Image analysis & processing, including 3D display and deconvolution
  • Live cell imaging & time-lapse imaging
  • Multiphoton imaging (MPE)
  • Sheetplane illumination microscopy (SPIM)
  • Single molecule imaging
  • Super resolution techniques including:
    • PALM (Photoactivated light microscopy)
    • STORM (Stochastic optical reconstruction microscopy)
    • SIM (Structured illumination microscopy)
  • Tiling of image montages
  • Total internal reflection fluorescence (TIRF)
  • Transmitted light imaging  

Selected Publications

Umans RA, Henson HE, Mu F, Parupalli C, Ju B, Peters JL, Lanham KA, Plavicki JS, Taylor MR. CNS angiogenesis and barriergenesis occur simultaneously. Dev Biol 425:101-108, 2017.

Damm EW, Clements WK. Pdgf signalling guides neural crest contribution to the haematopoietic stem cell specification niche. Nat Cell Biol 19:457-467, 2017.

Trivedi N, Stabley DR, Cain B, Howell D, Laumonnerie C, Ramahi JS, Temirov J, Kerekes RA, Gordon-Weeks PR, Solecki DJ. Drebrin-mediated microtubule-actomyosin coupling steers cerebellar granule neuron nucleokinesis and migration pathway selection. Nat Commun 8:14484, 2017.

Lee KH, Zhang P, Kim HJ, Mitrea DM, Sarkar M, Freibaum BD, Cika J, Coughlin M, Messing J, Molliex A, Maxwell BA, Kim NC, Temirov J, Moore J, Kolaitis RM, Shaw TI, Bai B, Peng J, Kriwacki RW, Taylor JP. C9orf72 dipeptide repeats impair the assembly, dynamics, and function of membrane-less organelles. Cell 167:774-788.e17, 2016.

Man SM, Karki R, Sasai M, Place DE, Kesavardhana S, Temirov J, Frase S, Zhu Q, Malireddi RK, Kuriakose T, Peters JL, Neale G, Brown SA, Yamamoto M, Kanneganti TD. IRGB10 liberates bacterial ligands for sensing by the AIM2 and caspase-11-NLRP3 inflammasomes. Cell 167:382-396.e17, 2016.

Marzahn MR, Marada S, Lee J, Nourse A, Kenrick S, Zhao H, Ben-Nissan G, Kolaitis RM, Peters JL, Pounds S, Errington WJ, Prive GG, Taylor JP, Sharon M, Schuck P, Ogden SK, Mittag T. Higher-order oligomerization promotes localization of SPOP to liquid nuclear speckles. EMBO J 35:1254-1275, 2016.

Molliex A, Temirov J, Lee J, Coughlin M, Kanagaraj AP, Kim HJ, Mittag T, Taylor JP. Phase separation by low complexity domains promotes stress granule assembly and drives pathological fibrillization. Cell 163:123-133, 2015.

Churchman ML, Low J, Qu C, Paietta EM, Kasper LH, Chang Y, Payne-Turner D, Althoff MJ, Song G, Chen SC, Ma J, Rusch M, McGoldrick D, Edmonson M, Gupta P, Wang YD, Caufield W, Freeman B, Li L, Panetta JC, Baker S, Yang YL, Roberts KG, McCastlain K, Iacobucci I, Peters JL, Centonze VE, Notta F, Dobson SM, Zandi S, Dick JE, Janke L, Peng J, Kodali K, Pagala V, Min J, Mayasundari A, Williams RT, Willman CL, Rowe J, Luger S, Dickins RA, Guy RK, Chen T, Mullighan CG. Efficacy of retinoids in IKZF1-mutated BCR-ABL1 acute lymphoblastic leukemia. Cancer Cell 28:343-356, 2015.