Continuous Live-Cell Culture Imaging and Single-Cell Tracking by Computational Lensfree LED Microscopy

Sensors (Basel). 2019 Mar 11;19(5):1234. doi: 10.3390/s19051234.


Continuous cell culture monitoring as a way of investigating growth, proliferation, and kinetics of biological experiments is in high demand. However, commercially available solutions are typically expensive and large in size. Digital inline-holographic microscopes (DIHM) can provide a cost-effective alternative to conventional microscopes, bridging the gap towards live-cell culture imaging. In this work, a DIHM is built from inexpensive components and applied to different cell cultures. The images are reconstructed by computational methods and the data are analyzed with particle detection and tracking methods. Counting of cells as well as movement tracking of living cells is demonstrated, showing the feasibility of using a field-portable DIHM for basic cell culture investigation and bringing about the potential to deeply understand cell motility.

Keywords: Complementary Metal-Oxide Semiconductor (CMOS) image sensor; LED; cell counting; cell culture; cell imaging; lensless holographic microscopy.

MeSH terms

  • Cell Culture Techniques
  • Cell Tracking / methods*
  • Holography / methods
  • Humans
  • Microscopy / methods*