CCR Intravital Microscopy Core


Intravital microscopy (IVM) is one of the most powerful imaging approaches aimed at visualizing cellular processes in live animals under both physiological and pathological conditions. The development of a broad variety of transgenic animals combined with specific procedures to access several organs, including the installation of imaging windows, have provided an unprecedented view of the progression of several diseases, including cancer in real-time. Specifically, IVM enables:

  1. The investigation of the cellular mechanisms underlying tumor initiation, progression, and metastasis in live animals
  2. Multimodal analysis of tumors, surrounding microenvironment (e.g. vasculature, extracellular matrix), dynamics and role of the immune system
  3. Testing the efficacy of drugs at the tissue, cellular and subcellular level


The mission of the CCR IVM Core is to provide CCR investigators with the opportunity to perform high resolution imaging of the dynamics of a variety of cellular and subcellular processes in live rodent models. The Core provides full assistance in the experimental design, animal study proposals, animal handling, intravital imaging, and data analysis. Moreover, the IVM core will help investigators to develop novel ad-hoc imaging and analysis procedures for their existing animal models.

Accessing Services:

The CCR Intravital Microscopy Core is open to all NCI investigators.  To discuss the details of your project and evaluate its feasibility, contact Roberto Weigert.


The core personnel have extensive expertise in multi-photon and confocal microscopy, animal handling, animal imaging, surgical procedures, designing and generation of custom-made tools for IVM (imaging windows, motion stabilizers, delivery systems), imaging processing and data analysis.


  • Leica TCS SP8 Dive Spectral Multiphoton and Confocal System equipped with two pulsed lasers:
    • Insight X3 (690-1300nm tuning range)
    • Mai-Tai (690-1080 nm tuning range)
  • Resonant and non-resonant scanners
  • Four HyD hybrid detectors
  • TCS SP8 Falcon (Fast Lifetime CONtrast) for FLIM applications

Image Procession Software:

  • Imaris
  • Autoquant
  • FIJI Image J
  • Math Lab


  • Fluorescence Lifetime Imaging (FLIM)
  • Fluorescence Resonance Energy Transfer (FRET)
  • Fluorescence Recovery After Photobleaching (FRAP)
  • Photo-activation and Photo-switching
  • Second and Third Harmonic Generation

Our Team:

Roberto Weigert, Ph.D.
Building 37, 2050B

Yeap S. Ng, Ph.D.
Research Fellow
Building 37, 2050