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Methods Mol Biol. 2007;369:291-308.

Fluorescence-integrated transmission electron microscopy images: integrating fluorescence microscopy with transmission electron microscopy.

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  • 1Zoology Department, University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI, USA.


This chapter describes high-pressure freezing (HPF) techniques for correlative light and electron microscopy on the same sample. Laser scanning confocal microscopy (LSCM) is exploited for its ability to collect fluorescent, as well as transmitted and back scattered light (BSL) images at the same time. Fluorescent information from a whole mount (preembedding) or from thin sections (post-embedding) can be displayed as a color overlay on transmission electron microscopy (TEM) images. Fluorescence-integrated TEM (F-TEM) images provide a fluorescent perspective to TEM images. The pre-embedding method uses a thin two-part agarose pad to immobilize live Caenorhabditis elegans embryos for LSCM, HPF, and TEM. Pre-embedding F-TEM images display fluorescent information collected from a whole mount of live embryos onto all thin sections collected from that sample. In contrast, the postembedding method uses HPF and freeze substitution with 1% paraformaldehyde in 95% ethanol followed by low-temperature embedding in methacrylate resin. This procedure preserves the structure and function of green fluorescent protein (GFP) as determined by immunogold labeling of GFP, when compared with GFP expression, both demonstrated in the same thin section.

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