In 2014, the Nobel Prize in Chemistry was awarded to several scientists responsible for developing methods to break the resolution limits of optical microscopy. One technique pioneered by Dr. Eric Betzig, known as PALM microscopy, allows researchers to precisely measure the locations of single protein molecules within a cell, but unfortunately requires cells to be illuminated with such high light intensities that it can only be used reliably on fixed (dead) cells; living cells are often heavily damaged or even killed within minutes of observation using this technique.
In February 2017, Scintillon Institute Principal Investigator and Associate Professor Nathan Shaner, Ph.D. was awarded an R01 grant from the NIH's National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS) for the development of genetically encoded tools to solve this problem.
In order to allow researchers to observe single molecules in living cells without damaging them, Dr. Shaner will use bioluminescence - biologically-generated light that does not produce heat - to enable PALM-type imaging of individual proteins.
Scintillon Institute Associate Professor Nathan Shaner, Ph.D. was awarded a U01 grant from the NIH's National Institute for Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) as part of the federal BRAIN initiative. This grant will allow Dr. Shaner and his collaborators, Chris Moore, Ph.D.(Brown University) and Ute Hochgeschwender, M.D.(Central Michigan University), to expand the development of the non-invasive technology known as BioLuminescent OptoGenetics (BL-OG), which combines biological light production with light-sensitive proteins, allowing highly flexible manipulation of individual neurons.
The Scintillion Institute’s Nathan Shaner and his collaborator Ute Hochgeschwender at Central Michigan University became recipients of a National Science Foundation (NSF) BRAIN EAGER grant for developing non-invasive optogenetics based on bioluminescence.Read more
This project will take advantage of wild-type fluorescent proteins with novel optical properties to be cloned from a broad range of species, including several Great Barrier Reef corals made available through an international collaboration.Read more
The "A Bright Monomericgreen Fluorescentprotein Derived From Branchiostoma Lanceolatumpublication" was published in Nature Methods (10, 407-209, 2013)
We report a monomeric yellow-green fluorescent protein, mNeonGreen, derived from a tetrameric fluorescent protein from the cephalochordate Branchiostoma lanceolatum.Read more