Optometry for a short-sighted microscope

Biophys J. 2021 Oct 19;120(20):4301-4304. doi: 10.1016/j.bpj.2021.09.011. Epub 2021 Sep 10.


Evanescent-wave scattering is a topic in classical electrodynamics and in the study of colloidal particles near a boundary. However, how such near-surface scattering at subcellular refractive-index heterogeneities degrades the excitation confinement in biological total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy has not been well studied. An elegant theoretical work by Axelrod and Axelrod now addresses this very relevant question and reveals that-even when scattered-evanescent light preserves some of its surprising optical properties.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Microscopy, Fluorescence
  • Optometry*
  • Refractometry