The University of Oslo funds new research infrastructure in light microscopy

Two-color confocal and MINFLUX images of Tom20 (green) and mitochondrial DNA (red) stained with sCy5 and CF680 in mammalian cells using indirect immunolabeling. The two fluorophores were distinguished by ratiometric detection strategy. Note the dissimilar labeling density of the two imaged structures. Image from Abberior.

IEMR receive support from UiO for the acquisition of new research infrastructure. “It is vital to be at the forefront of new technology to be competitive in the international research frontier,” says Professor Bill Louch.

In the autumn of 2023, UiO announced 45 million Norwegian kroner for the acquisition and establishment of research infrastructure for 2024. This includes advanced scientific equipment and large equipment facilities, electronic infrastructure, as well as scientific databases and collections.

There was strong competition for the funds, and UiO’s Research Infrastructure Committee received applications totalling 194 million NOK.

Professor Bill Louch and colleagues at IEMR have received funding from UiO for a super-resolution microscope that will be part of the Advanced Light Microscopy core facility.

A core facility is an equipment-heavy specialized laboratory that serves researchers both within and outside their own environment. The medical faculty has about 20 core facilities. The microscope will be the first of its kind in Norway.

“I am very pleased to have received support for this new microscope. We are establishing this technology for the very first time in Norway. The microscope will allow us to expand the scientific investigations in my research group. It will also be available to other researchers through our core facility for advanced light microscopy,” says Louch.

He believes the funding will strengthen the research community in the field in Norway.

“It is very important to be at the forefront of new technology to be competitive in the international research frontier. And for our students and postdoctoral researchers, it is especially important that they can deliver top modern science that will enhance their careers,” points out the researcher.

“I see this new technology as a way to consolidate our expertise and scientific status, while also supporting the next generation of researchers,” he adds.

Can reveal detailed cell structure

The new microscope is based on a technology called MINFLUX, which makes it possible to show many more details in cells than was previously possible. Compared to the microscope Louch used for his doctorate in the 1990s, the new microscope can reveal detailed cell structure 100 times better.

“Microscopes allow us to make the invisible visible. In my group, we look at cells in the heart, but others look at cells in the brain or kidneys or any organ. It is very difficult to understand the small details in the structures that make cells work in healthy or what is wrong with disease,” explains Louch.

He says that advances in microscopy are essential to gain this knowledge and achieve this goal.

“Now we will use this fantastic technological development to gain exceptional insight into human disease and use the knowledge to develop new and better therapies.”

The Deputy Head at Klinmed, Shuo-Wang Qiao is also enthusiastic about the new microscope.

“It can have a resolution down to one to two nanometers and thus be able to visualize submolecular structures in living cells in real time,” she says.

The microscope is purchased with funds from the NFR’s INFRAstructure program in addition to support from UiO.


Translated and abbreviated article from

MINFLUX tracks molecular movements at frequencies up to 10 kHz, resolving molecular motion every 100 μs. That’s 100 times faster than conventional camera-based methods.