14 October 2003 Two-channel fluorescence lifetime microscope with two colour laser excitation, single-molecule sensitivity, and submicrometer resolution
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Abstract
We present results from a two channel confocal microscope set-up allowing one to efficiently record two-colour as well as polarization resolved time-correlated single molecule fluorescence data. In addition to their spectral characteristics, single molecules can be distinguished by their fluorescence lifetime and polarization. This provides independent distinctive information and results in enhanced detection sensitivity. The set-up we present uses two picosecond diode lasers (440nm and 635 nm) for fluorescence excitation and a piezo scanner for sample movement. A learning scan algorithm permits very fast piezo scanner movement and offers a superior positioning accuracy on single molecules. The time-correlated photon counting system uses Time-Tagged Time-Resolved (TTTR) data aquisition, in which each photon is recorded individually. This method allows for the reconstruction not only fluorescence decay constants of each pixel for the purpose of Fluorescence Lifetime Imaging (FLIM) but also to analyze the fluorescence fluctuation correlation function on a single spot of interest. Cross-correlation between two channels can be used to eliminate detector artifacts. Finally, fluorescence antibunching can also be analyzed. We show results obtained with immobilized and diffusing red and blue excited fluorescently labelled latex microspheres, as well as from single fluorophore molecules.
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Felix Koberling, Michael Wahl, Matthias Patting, Hans-Juergen Rahn, Peter Kapusta, Rainer Erdmann, "Two-channel fluorescence lifetime microscope with two colour laser excitation, single-molecule sensitivity, and submicrometer resolution", Proc. SPIE 5143, Novel Optical Instrumentation for Biomedical Applications, (14 October 2003); doi: 10.1117/12.500610; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.500610
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