Wet electron microscopy with quantum dots

Biotechniques. 2006 Sep;41(3):295-8. doi: 10.2144/000112239.


Wet electron microscopy (EM) is a new imaging method with the potential to allow higher spatial resolution of samples. In contrast to most EM methods, it requires little time to perform and does not require complicated equipment or difficult steps. We used this method on a common murine macrophage cell line, IC-21, in combination with various stains and preparations, to collect high resolution images of the actin cytoskeleton. Most importantly, we demonstrated the use of quantum dots in conjunction with this technique to perform light/electron correlation microscopy. We found that wet EM is a useful tool that fits into a niche between the simplicity of light microscopy and the high spatial resolution of EM.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Actins / metabolism
  • Animals
  • Cell Line
  • Cytoskeleton / metabolism
  • Fluorescent Dyes / pharmacology
  • Image Processing, Computer-Assisted
  • Macrophages / metabolism*
  • Mice
  • Microscopy, Electron / instrumentation
  • Microscopy, Electron / methods*
  • Quantum Dots*
  • Scattering, Radiation
  • Time Factors


  • Actins
  • Fluorescent Dyes