Quantitative orientation-independent differential interference contrast (DIC) microscopy coupled with orientation-independent Polarization microscopy
LaFountain, James R.
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Differential interference contrast (DIC) microscopy is widely used to observe structure and motion in unstained, transparent living cells and isolated organelles, producing a monochromatic shadowcast image of optical phase gradient. Polarized light microscopy (Pol) reveals structural anisotropy due to form birefringence, intrinsic birefringence, stress birefringence, etc. DIC and Pol complement each other as, for example, in a live dividing cell, the DIC image will clearly show the chromosomes while the Pol image will depict the distribution of the birefringent microtubules in the spindle. Both methods, however, have the same shortcomings: they require the proper orientation of a specimen in relation to the optical system in order to achieve best results.
Author Posting. © Microscopy Society of America, 2007. This article is posted here by permission of Cambridge University Press for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Microscopy and Microanalysis 13 Suppl. 2 (2007): 10-11, doi:10.1017/S1431927607075186.