Published on Tue Aug 31 2021

GraviKit: an easy-to-implement microscope add-on for observation of gravitation dependent processes

Feldhaus, C., Kolb, M., Kueppers, M., Hardy, S., Palmisano, R.

GraviKit converts a standard inverted research microscope into an imaging device with a horizontal beampath with a stage that rotates the sample around the optical axis. The direction of gravity can be freely chosen during an imaging experiment.

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Abstract

One of the most important environmental cues for living organisms is gravity and many developmental processes depend on it. However, when it comes to light microscopy, a majority of studies on these processes work with their objects of interest placed perpendicular to their natural orientation. One reason for that is probably that light microscopes with the required horizontal beampath are either costly or require advanced technical skills. To circumvent these obstacles and make imaging of gravity-dependent processes with a horizontal beampath possible for any lab we developed GraviKit. It converts a standard inverted research microscope into an imaging device with a horizontal beampath with a stage that rotates the sample around the optical axis. Like this, the direction of gravity can be freely chosen during an imaging experiment. The system is easy to implement and suitable for multi-user environments.