Guided STED nanoscopy enables super-resolution imaging of blood stage malaria parasites
Publication Year 2019-03-18, Volume 9, Issue #1, Page 4674
Journal Title
Scientific Reports
Publication Type
Journal Article
Malaria remains a major burden world-wide, but the disease-causing parasites from the genus Plasmodium are difficult to study in vitro. Owing to the small size of the parasites, subcellular imaging poses a major challenge and the use of super-resolution techniques has been hindered by the parasites' sensitivity to light. This is particularly apparent during the blood-stage of the Plasmodium life cycle, which presents an important target for drug research. The iron-rich food vacuole of the parasite undergoes disintegration when illuminated with high-power lasers such as those required for high resolution in Stimulated Emission Depletion (STED) microscopy. This causes major damage to the sample precluding the use of this super-resolution technique. Here we present guided STED, a novel adaptive illumination (AI) STED approach, which takes advantage of the highly-reflective nature of the iron deposit in the cell to identify the most light-sensitive parts of the sample. Specifically in these parts, the high-power STED laser is deactivated automatically to prevent local damage. Guided STED nanoscopy finally allows super-resolution imaging of the whole Plasmodium life cycle, enabling multicolour imaging of blood-stage malaria parasites with resolutions down to 35 nm without sample destruction.
Springer Nature
WEHI Research Division(s)
Infectious Diseases And Immune Defence
PubMed ID
Open Access at Publisher's Site
Rights Notice
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Creation Date: 2019-03-27 08:18:49
Last Modified: 2019-04-01 09:19:35
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