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BioPhotonics is the global resource for research, business and product news and information for the biophotonics community and the industry's only stand-alone print and digital magazine. Stay current with a FREE subscription, and expand your knowledge of light and the life sciences through our extensive, industry-specific archives.

EDITORIAL COMMENT
Latest Issue
Oct 2017

Getting Granular

MARCIA STAMELL, ASSOCIATE MANAGING EDITOR, marcia.stamell @photonics.com
Marcia StamellOne of the big stories in tools for biological research is the marriage of computational analysis and advanced optical methods. Progress in the two technologies goes hand in hand. Ever more powerful computation can allow researchers to access biological information that previously had been beyond their reach. That capacity in turn pushes demand for ever more exacting photonic methods to gather the data that can feed this analysis.

A case in point is discussed in our cover story, “Single-Molecule Localization Blazes New Paths for Microscopy,” by Carl Ebeling of Bruker. Single-molecule localization microscopy combines optical control of the fluorescence state with localization of individual molecules. The resulting superresolution images are rendered computationally to reveal structures with a high degree of detail. But direct statistical analysis of the data itself provides the bigger pay-off: Among other things, it enables investigation of the effects of drug treatments. The advancement of data analysis, the author writes, is as important as improving the imaging (read article).

Elsewhere in this issue:

• “3D Mapping of Neural Circuits In Vivo Opens the Window on Neurological Disease,” by Anna Linnenberger of Meadowlark Optics, examines the role of spatial light modulators in expanding the capacities of two-photon microscopes. When combined, the two devices are capable of parallelized excitation for photoactivation and volumetric imaging, giving researchers access to 3D images of single-cell resolution of the microcircuitry of the brain (read article).

• Handheld disinfection via UVC LEDs is providing a new weapon in the fight against hospital-acquired infections and chemical-resistant bugs. UVC LEDs’ output range of 260 to 270 nm is the sweet spot for DNA inactivation, which the devices deliver at the point of care, writes Rajul Randive of Crystal IS. They can be used to disinfect everything from surgical tools and patient rooms to catheters and ventilators. “UVC LEDs Can Combat Hospital-Acquired Infections” (read article).

• Behind the TV depictions of forensic pathology lies real-life photonic tools to analyze biological specimens, writes Ilene Semiatin in “Forensic Microscopy Expands Its Reach.” Tools such as stereomicroscopy, polarized light microscopy and scanning electron microscopy are in increasing demand for sexual assault investigations and for enforcement of homeland security and drug cases (read article).

• For our Biopinion this month, Duke University’s Nimmi Ramanujam writes about the benefits of women-led research into issues related to women’s health. The speculum, which had its beginning in 19th-century trials on African-American slaves, is a case in point. Created without consideration of patient pain, it remains a barrier to care. Ramanujam’s 21st-century team has developed a patient-centered alternative. The Pocket Colposcope is a tampon-like device that makes use of a consumer-grade light source and a camera to provide a live video stream or image of the cervix on a phone or tablet (read article).

Enjoy the issue.
Karen Newman
Group Publisher Karen Newman has had a career in business-to-business and association publishing, much of it spent covering technical, scientific and life sciences subjects.
Mike Wheeler
An award-winning journalist with more than 20 years of experience, Managing Editor Michael D. Wheeler oversees editorial content for Photonics Spectra, EuroPhotonics, BioPhotonics and Industrial Photonics magazines.
Marcia Stamell
Associate Managing Editor Marcia Stamell is the editor of BioPhotonics and Industrial Photonics. She has worked for general interest newspapers, the business press and national magazines as a writer and editor.
 
Justine Murphy
Senior Editor Justine Murphy is an award-winning journalist with nearly 20 years of experience. She serves as editor of EuroPhotonics, host of Light Matters and producer of podcasts. She also leads development of magazine special sections and marketing projects.
Autum Pylant
News Editor Autum C. Pylant is an Air Force Veteran with 10+ years of award-winning broadcast journalism experience. She is responsible for the steady flow of news and new product announcements to web and print and is the producer of the Light Matters video newscast.
Robin Riley
Multimedia/Web Editor Robin Riley has 30+ years of experience in communications and marketing for a range of technical industries. She is a regular contributor to web content and social media, and organizes and produces custom and editorial webinars.
 
Hank Hogan
Contributing editor Hank Hogan holds a Bachelor of Science degree in physics from the University of Texas at Austin. Hogan worked in the semiconductor industry and now writes about science and technology.
Marie Freebody
Contributing editor Marie Freebody is a free-lance science and technology journalist with a master’s degree in physics and a concentration in nuclear astrophysics from the University of Surrey in England.
Valerie Coffey
Science writer Valerie C. Coffey holds a bachelor’s degree in physics and a master’s in astronomy. She has covered optics, photonics, physics and astronomy for a variety of industry and academic publications since 2000.
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