Specimen preparation is particularly important when samples are to be examined or analysed using either light or electron microscopes. Poorly prepared samples used in any form of microscopy will result in the generation of artefacts. Making minor modifications to the way in which samples are prepared, examining the range of compounds used in preparation and ensuring the maintenance of preparation equipment will all assist in improvements of sample quality.
Ideally, perfectly prepared immunofluorescence experiments should have a high signal to noise ratio and include a range of control samples. These parameters are often dictated by the quality of antibody, but experiments at the RMS Learning Zone may be able to offer hints and tips to improve sample preparation. Considerations in preparation such as the choice of fixative and quality of antibody are important.
At mmc2014 expert microscopists from different backgrounds will be available to answer your questions about the pitfalls and procedures of specimen preparation used in biological, materials and this year particular emphasis will be on the preparation of geo-samples (rocks, minerals and fossils) prior to the Geo-materials workshop in Oxford in September.