SOURCE: Xradia Inc.

Xradia Inc.

October 04, 2011 15:53 ET

Diamond Light Source Partners With Xradia on First Lab-to-Synchrotron Solution for Cryo Transmission X-Ray Imaging of Biological Cells

PLEASANTON, CA--(Marketwire - Oct 4, 2011) - Diamond Light Source, the UK's national synchrotron facility, has chosen Xradia's UltraXRM-S/L220c for use in its Cryo Transmission X-ray Microscope (Cryo-TXM) imaging initiatives. Diamond will initially implement the UltraXRM-S/L220c with a laboratory-based source while working with Xradia and leading scientists to refine and advance the workflow associated with high resolution 3D X-ray imaging for biological samples, prior to moving the microscope to the synchrotron in 2014.

As part of Phase III, Diamond Light Source is constructing a soft X-ray cryo tomography beamline designed to enable the collection of tomographic series of vitrified biological cells.3D X-ray imaging of biological cells under cryogenic conditions complements existing techniques by providing structural information at a resolution superior to that of fluorescence light microscopy with thicker, unstained and unsectioned samples than those required for techniques such as cryo-transmission electron microscopy (TEM). Diamond's Cryo-TXM beamline will operate at soft X-ray energies in the region termed the "water window," where the natural contrast between the vitreous ice surrounding a frozen cell and its carbon-containing structures is highly conducive to imaging.

Diamond, which is located on the Harwell Science and Innovation Campus in Oxfordshire, will be the first installation in the world of a water window-based system with a laboratory source that will then migrate to the synchrotron to provide full-field cryogenic X-ray imaging of cellular samples.

"Combining X-ray imaging with cryogenic sample preparation brings researchers as close as possible to studying cells in their natural state," says Liz Duke, PhD., Principal Beamline Scientist. "Xradia has already demonstrated relevant success in producing a full tomogram of frozen hydrated yeast cells. Collaborating with Xradia will yield advantages in terms of both imaging technology and scientific innovation."

Along with its unique capability to migrate from a lab-based environment to a synchrotron beamline, the UltraXRM-S/L220c employs Xradia's industry-leading capillary and phase contrast optics. Upon migration to the synchrotron, the opportunity will arise to develop phase contrast techniques using harder X-rays outside the water window on the same instrument, thus enabling larger samples to be studied.

"Along with making X-ray imaging resources available to cellular biologists as quickly as possible, Diamond Light Source has demonstrated great commitment to working with scientists to refine techniques for sample preparation, data collection and analysis," says Wenbing Yun, PhD., Founder and CTO of Xradia. "We're very much looking forward to helping advance adoption and the potential for correlative studies encompassing cell structure."

The UltraXRM-S/L220c equips scientists to begin imaging using the water window laboratory source next year and continue through deployment on bending magnet beamline B24 in 2014.

About Diamond

  • Diamond Light Source is funded by the UK Government via the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) and by the Wellcome Trust.
  • For more information about Diamond including information on Phases I and II visit
  • Diamond generates extremely intense pin-point beams of synchrotron light of exceptional quality ranging from X-rays, ultra-violet and infrared. For example Diamond's X-rays are around 100 billion times brighter than a standard hospital X-ray machine.
  • Many of the everyday commodities that we take for granted, from food manufacturing to cosmetics, from revolutionary drugs to surgical tools, from computers to mobile phones, have all been developed or improved using synchrotron light.
  • Diamond brings benefits to:
    • Biology and medicine. For example, the fight against illnesses such as Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, osteoporosis and many cancers will benefit from the new research techniques available at Diamond.
    • The physical and chemical sciences. For example, in the near future, engineers will be able to image their structure down to an atomic scale, helping them to understand the way impurities and defects behave and how they can be controlled.
    • The Environmental and Earth sciences. For example, Diamond helps researchers to identify organisms that target specific types of contaminant in the environment which can potentially lead to identifying cheap and effective ways for cleaning polluted land.

About Xradia
Xradia designs and manufactures microscopes for industrial and academic research applications. Xradia's solutions offer unparalleled high contrast and high resolution imaging capabilities for a large range of sample sizes and shapes. The company's heritage began in the synchrotron and extends to the laboratory. Energy-tunable, ultra-high resolution 3D X-ray microscopes for synchrotron facilities include the UltraSPX and the UltraXRM-S. Xradia's two laboratory product families, the UltraXRM-L and VersaXRM, together offer a multi-length scale solution delivering full volume 3D imaging with resolution down to 50 nm. Additional information can be found at

Copyright © 2011 Xradia, Inc. All rights reserved. Xradia is a registered trademark and UltraXRM-L, UltraXRM-S/L220c, and VersaXRM are trademarks of Xradia, Inc. Other trademarks that may be mentioned in this release are the intellectual property of their respective owners.

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