December 1st, 2nd at the University of Heidelberg, Germany

The group of Dr Venera Weinhardt works on the development of novel X-ray imaging techniques across different scales: from macroscopic objects like whole organisms to the nanostructure of single cells. The group develops mathematical models of x-ray imaging, reconstruction and segmentation algorithms, and pipelines for sample preparation and imaging to answer central questions in cell and developmental biology.

Within the CoCID project, the group focuses on the development and implementation of full-rotation tomography based on cylindrical specimen holders into SXT-100 lab-scale microscope. These developments enable high-throughput imaging of entire mammalian cells, including investigations of large human cells, such as those typically seen with pathological conditions, for example, viral
infections. The group collaborates with Prof. Dr Ralf Bartenschlager (University Clinic Heidelberg) and Prof. Dr Maija Vihinen-Ranta (University of Jyvaskyla) to study ultrastructural changes induced by SARS-CoV-2, Dengue, Zika, and HSV-1 infections at the whole cell level.

Image: Orthogonal orthoslices and a 3D rendering of a reconstructed whole mammalian cell imaged with cryo-SXT at the NCXT Berkeley. The cylindrical holder allows full sample rotation during imaging.


Read the update in pdf here

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