May. 18, 2015
News

Focus on Microscopy Göttingen: Celebrating Super-Resolution and All Aspects of Microscopy

  • This year the FOM conference was held in the Lokhalle in Göttingen,  a 6400 square meter former engine shop for the maintenance of locomotive engines.This year the FOM conference was held in the Lokhalle in Göttingen, a 6400 square meter former engine shop for the maintenance of locomotive engines.
  • This year the FOM conference was held in the Lokhalle in Göttingen,  a 6400 square meter former engine shop for the maintenance of locomotive engines.
  • Stefan Hell, Nobel Prize winner 2014 by presenting principles and recent advancements of far-field optical nanoscopy.
  • Opening remarks for FOM 2015 by Fred Wouters on behalf of the local organizing committee
  • Plenary lecture of Ann-Shyn Chiang from the Brain Research Center at the National Tsing Hua University Taiwan
  • Vladislav Verkhusha from the Albert Einstein College in New York and Fred Brakenhoff from the University of Amsterdam
  • Samuel Hess from the University of Maine introducing FPALM
  • George Barbastathis from MIT presenting physics and algorithms for light at various states of coherence
  • Light sheet-based fluorescence microscopy for quantitative biology introduced by Ernst Stelzer from the Goethe University of Frankfurt
  • The local organzing team of FOM 2015 in front of the Layout of the new Fred Brakenhoff Prize for young promising scientists
  • Fu-Jen Kao from the National Yang-Ming University and member of the Imaging & Microscopy Advisory Board and his team will host the next year's FOM
  • FOM 2016 will take place in Taipei, Taiwan from March 20-23, 2016.

This year, March 29th -April 1st, the Focus on Microscopy (FOM2015) conference was held in the Lokhalle in Göttingen and was organized by Dr. Gertrude Bunt and Prof. Fred Wouters of the University Medical Center Göttingen. The Lokhalle (German for Locomotive hall), a 6400 square meter former engine shop for the maintenance of locomotive engines, offered both the space and the industrial ambiance for a highly successful meeting. While outside hurricane Niklas was unrooting trees, inside the Lokhalle the floor was also tumultuous with about 1100 participants discussing the newest developments in microscopy and celebrating the unrooting of Abbe's law on optical resolution by the work honored in 2014's Nobel prize for chemistry for super-resolution microscopy (nanoscopy).

FOM 2015 celebrated this breakthrough achievement by honoring one of it's fathers, Prof. Stefan Hell of the Max-Planck-Institute for Biophysical Chemistry in his home town and on his "favorite scientific meeting". On the opening day, Prof. Hell's pioneering work was the topic of Prof. Alberto Diaspro's (Italian Institute of Technology, Genua, Italy) laudatory speech "The route from super-resolution to the Nobel prize 2014" followed by the keynote lecture "Far-field optical nanoscopy: principles and recent advancements" by Prof. Hell himself. A special session, running through the length of the FOM focussed on the developments and applications of super-resolution techniques and was extremely well visited.

Besides super-resolution, important topics this year were 3D tomographic techniques, particularly light sheet imaging. FOM uniquely hosts both developers and users of microscopy and, consequently, offers a mix of new technical developments (with sessions on novel principles and methods and on optical theory) and implementations of modern techniques (with sessions on microscopy applications, and biological and biomedical imaging). It therefore serves as a microscopy technology market place, connecting development with demand and vice versa.

The opening lecture on Sunday the 29th of March was given by Ann-Shyn Chiang of the Brain Research Center from the national Tsing Hua University in Taiwan.

He spoke about his work on reverse-engineering the Drosophila brain by the imaging of its integrative connectome.

Other keynote plenary speakers and topics were: Vlad Verkusha (Albert Einstein College of Medicine, USA): Engineering of bacterial phytochromes for in vivo imaging. Sam Hess (University of Maine, USA): Localization-based superresolution microscopy: Principles and biological applications. George Barbastathis (Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA): Phase retrieval: physics and algorithms for light at various states of coherence. Ernst Stelzer (University of Frankfurt, Germany): Light sheet-based fluorescence microscopy for quantitative biology. Mark Bates (Max-Planck-Institute for Biophysical Chemistry, Göttingen): Fluorescence nanoscopy with stochastic switching and 4Pi detection.

In 252 oral presentations in 6 parallel sessions, 520 posters in two sessions and with the participation of 72 companies showcasing their technologies, the field of microscopy presented itself in full width. Thanks to the flexible planning possibilities offered by the Lokhalle, FOM Göttingen could accommodate the large numbers of registrations that were steadily growing as the opening date approached. This year's FOM turned out to be the largest of the entire series.

In the FOM closing session, a new Fred Brakenhoff Prize for young promising scientists was announced by Erik Manders, to be awarded for the first time during FOM2016 in Taipei (Taiwan).

Author
Dr. Gertrude Bunt

Prof. Fred Wouters
University Medicine Göttingen, Germany

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