RAMOT at Tel Aviv University Ltd.

An Add-On Optical Interferometer Chamber to Phase Microscopes for Sub-Nanometer 3D and Dynamic Information

Posted by RAMOT at Tel Aviv University Ltd.Responsive · Innovative Products and Technologies · Israel

Summary of the technology

An add-on optical module for microscopes allowing for single frame and dynamic capture of amplitude and phase profiles of transparent or semi-transparent biological and non-biological samples. This easy-to-use interferometric device is simply positioned in the camera port of a conventional inverted microscope, enabling quantitative structural, thickness and refractive index measurements in a non-contact, label-free manner.
Project ID : 5-2012-370

RAMOT at Tel Aviv University Ltd.

Technology
An add-on optical module for microscopes allowing for single frame and dynamic capture of amplitude and phase profiles of transparent or semi-transparent biological and non-biological samples. This easyto-use interferometric device is simply positioned in the camera port of a conventional inverted microscope, enabling quantitative structural, thickness and refractive index measurements in a noncontact, label-free manner.

The Need and Potential Application


This interferometric module can measure the dynamic optical thickness with sensitivity of less than 0.5 nanometers, and it does not necessitate using a floating optical table, as opposed to other muchmore-expensive interferometric setups. Such sensitivity enables measurements of very small changes in physical thickness, refractive index, and mechanical properties of biological and non-biological samples. Thus, the technology of interferometry becomes portable and available for wide-spread use.
This powerful imaging technique has significant value for immediate, fluorescent-free biological and medical applications, including red blood cell disease diagnosis (such as malaria, sickle cell anemia and thalassemia), cancer diagnosis and monitoring, and neuronal imaging. In addition, this module can be used for nondestructive testing of transparent micro and nano structures; for example, testing the manufacturing quality of micro-lens arrays.

Advantages

  • Suitable for highly dynamic samples - the device will provide a means of acquiring information on thickness and mechanical properties of live biological cells in a label-free manner with subnanometric precision, and without any sample preparation.
  • Module architecture provides precisions currently available only in research labs with optical tables for averting mechanical vibrations. The proposed module does not require optical lab conditions.
  • Inexpensive, utilizing standard-simple-available optical elements. No gratings are required.
  • Very easy to align and use, even by users without an optical knowledge (attractive for biologists and clinicians).

Stage of Development
We have several working prototypes with successful experiments on biological samples and transparent nano-elements (two journal papers so far).

Patents
Published PCT application No. WO 2013/140396

Supporting Publications
P. Girshovitz and N. T. Shaked, “Generalized cell morphological parameters based on interferometric phase microscopy and their application to cell life cycle characterization,”
Biomedical Optics Express, Vol. 3, No. 8, pp. 1757-1773, 2012
N. T. Shaked, “Quantitative phase microscopy of biological samples using a portable interferometer,” Optics Letters Vol. 37, No. 11, 2016-2019, 2012.

Project manager

Rona Samler
VP, BD Physical Science, Medical Device, Chemistry

Project researchers

Natan Tzvi Shaked
T.A.U Tel Aviv University, Engineering
Bio-Medical Engineering

Related keywords

  • Biology / Biotechnology
  • Micro- and Nanotechnology related to Biological sciences
  • Medical Technology / Biomedical Engineering
  • Microbiology Technology
  • Cellular and Molecular Biology Technology
  • Bioinformatics Technology
  • Medicine, Human Health
  • Genome Research
  • Diagnostics, Diagnosis
  • Imaging, Image Processing, Pattern Recognition
  • Electronics, Microelectronics
  • Electronic circuits, components and equipment
  • Microbiology Market
  • Micro- and Nanotechnology related to Biological sciences
  • Biochemistry / Biophysics Market
  • Stem cells and biobanks
  • Cellular and Molecular Biology Market
  • Bioinformatics Market
  • Diagnostic
  • Anatomy, Pathology, Immunology, Physiology
  • Medical equipment
  • Therapeutic
  • Other Medical/Health Related
  • Clinical Medicine
  • Other medical/health related (not elsewhere classified)
  • Medical imaging
  • Electronic Components
  • Some other electronics related
  • Life Sciences and Biotechnology
  • Medical Imaging and Image Processing
  • Life Sciences and Biotechnology
  • Research / Development tools
  • medical devices
  • Medical Imaging and Image Processing
  • medical devices
  • Diagnostic Instruments
  • Electronics and Electro-Optics
  • optical systems

About RAMOT at Tel Aviv University Ltd.

Technology Transfer Office from Israel

Ramot is Tel Aviv University's (TAU) technology transfer company and its liaison to industry, bringing promising scientific discoveries made at

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