Supercontinuum intrinsic fluorescence imaging heralds free view of living systems

bioRxiv [Preprint]. 2024 Feb 17:2024.01.26.577383. doi: 10.1101/2024.01.26.577383.


Optimal imaging strategies remain underdeveloped to maximize information for fluorescence microscopy while minimizing the harm to fragile living systems. Taking hint from the supercontinuum generation in ultrafast laser physics, we generated supercontinuum fluorescence from untreated unlabeled live samples before nonlinear photodamage onset. Our imaging achieved high-content cell phenotyping and tissue histology, identified bovine embryo polarization, quantified aging-related stress across cell types and species, demystified embryogenesis before and after implantation, sensed drug cytotoxicity in real-time, scanned brain area for targeted patching, optimized machine learning to track small moving organisms, induced two-photon phototropism of leaf chloroplasts under two-photon photosynthesis, unraveled microscopic origin of autumn colors, and interrogated intestinal microbiome. The results enable a facility-type microscope to freely explore vital molecular biology across life sciences.

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