Cell characterization and classification

Diagnosis and mapping for cell biological studies


By means of a special measuring head, light is irradiated with a wavelength of 1325 nm in the sample to be examined (non-contact procedure, no coupling medium necessary). The backscattered light contains depth information on the sample and is processed interferometrically (A scan). Stringing together a given number of A scans creates a cross section image, which is referred to as the B image in analogy to the ultrasound. By also displacing the measuring head or test specimen, a series of B sectional images can be recorded. This gives an image stack (tomogram), which provides high-resolution, geometric information from inside the test object.

Relevant parameters

  • Measurement range: 10 x 10 x 7 mm³
  • Measurement speed: 76 kHz
  • Axial resolution (in air): 12 µm
  • Lateral resolution: 13 µm

Equipment site

Fraunhofer IZI, main building, 2nd floor, B2.03 laboratory

Person responsible for equipment / contact person

Dipl.-Ing. (FH) Christian Wolf
Fraunhofer IKTS
Department of Bio- and Nanotechnology
Optical Coherence Tomography Unit

Phone +49 351 88815-618
Send an e-mail

Spectrometer for time-resolved fluorescence spectroscopy (OCD-Plus)

This procedure involves electromagnetic radiation being focused on the investigated cell tissue. After deactivating the radiation source, the decay behavior of the inherent fluorescence intensity is analyzed. As various tissues differ in their decay behavior with regard to fluorescence, cells can be classified on the basis of these parameters. The measurement procedure can also be applied to single cell measurements, thereby expanding the available measurement parameters for the characterization of cells. It has already been successfully demonstrated that carcinoma cells can be differentiated from healthy cells using this method.

Work is planned to be carried out in the following areas: a) classification at cell level (tissue sections / single cells), b) Speckle measurements, c) measurements in cavities of the human body, d) multi-level cell or tumor classification. Future fields of application include: i) quality control of cell therapeutics, ii) examination of cell population homogeneity, iii) detection of tumor cells in body fluids independent from immunological markers.

Relevant parameters

  • Laser: Pulsed excitation laser with reaction time in picosecond range
  • Laser pulse frequency: continuous wave (cw), 50 MHz
  • Laser pulse width: < 90 ps
  • Laser intensity: < 5 mW (cw), < 0.5 mW (pulsed)
  • Detection mode: ultra-fast time-correlated single photon counting (TCSPC) with adapted time resolution (max. 50 ns)
    • Wavelength range: 300–820 nm
    • IRF width: 180 ps, DCC camera (PMC 100, Becker & Hickl)
  • Specimen holder for cell-culture vessel: plate with wells
    • Measurements in two directions, detection of entire area possible
    • Controller with adjustable measurement starting point, adjustable length of individual steps and number of steps

Equipment site

Fraunhofer IZI, main building, 2nd floor, B2 laboratory

Person responsible for equipment / contact person

Dr.-Ing. Lotta Römhildt
Fraunhofer IKTS
Department of Bio- and Nanotechnology
Bio- and Nanosensors Unit

Phone +49 351 88815-662
Send an e-mail

Ultrasound wideband spectroscopy system

Ultrasound spectroscopy has long since been used for the medical diagnosis of cellular tissue and biological materials as well as for analyzing fluid media. Backscattered signals, which differ depending on their tissue properties, are evaluated using the pulse-echo method. Sound attenuation linked to absorption and scattering is analyzed in fluid media in transmission.

Ultrasound spectroscopy is predominantly used to determine acoustic and mechanical material properties. To this end, sound waves are transmitted into the medium to be characterized in different frequency ranges or in a frequency spectrum. The attenuation of the sound signals in the specimen is measured. This enables the sound attenuation in the specimen to be described as a function of sound frequency.

Relevant parameters

This device enables the direct measurement of a fluid medium, which is poured into a test tube, in the water bath. Ultra-low volumes of fluid can alternatively be applied to a slide and measured. The slide is placed between two ultrasonic probes, thus facilitating the transmission measurement or, if only one test probe is used, the impulse-echo measurement.

  • Operating frequency: 4 MHz and/or 7 MHz (band width 85 to 105 %)
  • Resonator size: 5 mm to 10 mm diameter
  • Size of object: test tube and/or slide

Person responsible for equipment / contact person

Jun.-Prof. Henning Heuer
Fraunhofer IKTS
Department of Systems for Testing and Analysis

Phone +49 351 88815-630
Send an e-mail

PD Dr.-Ing. habil. Thomas Herzog
Fraunhofer IKTS
Department of Systems for Testing and Analysis

Phone +49 351 88815-626
Send an e-mail

High-throughput flow cytometer

iQue Screener platform
© Fraunhofer IZI

iQue Screener platform, IntelliCyt Corp.

The iQue Screener platform is an integrated instrument, software and reagent system that enables a rapid, high content, multiplexed analysis of cells and beads in suspension, including 3D characterization of complex biological structures and precise measurement of cell surface properties. iQue Screeners have a patented sample introduction method that minimizes sample requirements while maximizing the speed of delivery to the flow cytometry detection engine, making it possible to deliver content-rich results in just minutes. As only minimal effort is required to prepare the samples, it is possible to follow cellular reactions almost right from the start when they are often most critical (e.g. after the application of therapeutics).

Relevant parameters

  • 2 lasers (488 nm and 640 nm)
  • 4 fluorescent channels
  • Minimal sample size 0.5 µm
  • Screening of suspension cells, beads, microbes and mixtures
  • Microplate rail with orbital shaker
  • Sample formats: 96 and 384 well plates, Eppendorf tubes
  • Sensitivity: 7 decade dynamic range
  • Exchangeable detection filters
  • Detection of up to 10,000 cells/second

Equipment site

Fraunhofer IZI, main building, 2nd floor, B2 laboratory

Person responsible for equipment / contact person

Christin Möser
Fraunhofer IZI
Department of Diagnostics
Nanotechnology Unit

Phone +49 341 35536-9311
Send an e-mail

Holger Lausch

Contact Press / Media

Dr. Holger Lausch

Site manager Fraunhofer IKTS

Fraunhofer Institute for Cell Therapy and Immunology
Perlickstraße 1
04103 Leipzig, Germany

Phone +49 341 35536-3401