Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) are reprogrammed cells that can have heterogeneous biological potential. Quality assurance metrics of reprogrammed iPSCs will be critical to ensure reliable use in cell therapies and personalized diagnostic tests. We present a quantitative phase imaging (QPI) workflow which includes acquisition, processing, and stitching multiple adjacent image tiles across a large field of view (LFOV) of a culture vessel. <p> </p>Low magnification image tiles (10x) were acquired with a Phasics SID4BIO camera on a Zeiss microscope. iPSC cultures were maintained using a custom stage incubator on an automated stage. We implement an image acquisition strategy that compensates for non-flat illumination wavefronts to enable imaging of an entire well plate, including the meniscus region normally obscured in Zernike phase contrast imaging. Polynomial fitting and background mode correction was implemented to enable comparability and stitching between multiple tiles. LFOV imaging of reference materials indicated that image acquisition and processing strategies did not affect quantitative phase measurements across the LFOV. Analysis of iPSC colony images demonstrated mass doubling time was significantly different than area doubling time. <p> </p>These measurements were benchmarked with prototype microsphere beads and etched-glass gratings with specified spatial dimensions designed to be QPI reference materials with optical pathlength shifts suitable for cell microscopy. <p> </p>This QPI workflow and the use of reference materials can provide non-destructive traceable imaging method for novel iPSC heterogeneity characterization.
Surface plasmon resonance microscopy (SPRM) is a powerful label-free imaging technique with spatial resolution approaching the optical diffraction limit. The high sensitivity of SPRM to small changes in index of refraction at an interface allows imaging of dynamic protein structures within a cell. Visualization of subcellular features, such as focal adhesions (FAs), can be performed on live cells using a high numerical aperture objective lens with a digital light projector to precisely position the incident angle of the excitation light. Within the cell-substrate region of the SPRM image, punctate regions of high contrast are putatively identified as the cellular FAs. Optical parameter analysis is achieved by application of the Fresnel model to the SPRM data and resulting refractive index measurements are used to calculate protein mass. FAs are known to be regions of high protein density that reside at the cell-substratum interface. Comparing SPRM with fluorescence images of antibody stained for vinculin, a component in FAs, reveals similar measurements of FA size. In addition, a positive correlation between FA size and protein density is revealed by SPRM. Comparing SPRM images for two cell types reveals a distinct difference in the protein density and mass of their respective FAs. Application of SPRM to quantify mass can greatly aid monitoring basic processes that control FA mass and growth and contribute to accurate models that describe cell-extracellular interactions.