Workshop: Structure Preservation by High-Pressure Freezing and Freeze Substitution

On Thursday the 24th of November 2016 the OCEM will host a workshop on high pressure freezing and how it can be used to improve structural preservation. The morning will consist of talks from students and staff who are currently using high pressure freezing in their projects. The afternoon will feature a lab visit. The cost is $20 per lab group (to cover the cost of coffee and room booking). For enquiries contact

HPF Workshop

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2017 MNZ Conference

The date of the 2017 New Zealand Conference on Microscopy has been announced. The conference will run from Tuesday the 31st of January - to Friday 3rd February 2017 at the Auckland University of Technology. For more information visit the conference website.

MNZ 2017

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Paper of the Month

Muhsin-Sharafaldine, M-R., Saunderson, S.C., Dunn, A.C., Faed, J.M., Kleffmann, T. and McLellan, A.D (2016) Procoagulant and immunogenic properties of melanoma exosomes, microvesicles and apoptotic vesicles. Oncotarget, 7(35):56279-56294. doi: 10.18632/oncotarget.10783.

Muhsin POM

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OCEM Autumn Newsletter

The 2016 OCEM newsletter is now available for download. In this issue: arrival of the high pressure freezer; Avizo software installation; oscillating diamond knives; monthly microscopy meetings; funding successful for a direct detector; recent publication; EM student award; PhD projects; cryo-EM information; staff news.

PDF Graphic

OCEM 2016 Newsletter

High Pressure Freezing Now Available in New Zealand

The Leica EM PACT 2 High Pressure Freezer has arrived and we are now able to cryo-fix samples up to 200Ám thick. Until now we had been limited to slam freezing, which produces only ~10Ám of vitrified ice. The EM PACT 2 will freeze samples within milliseconds, ensuring simultaneous immobilisation of all macromolecular components and fantastic ultra-structural preservation. This will also facilitate the study of dynamic processes as cells can be live-imaged and then frozen using the Rapid Loader. This is the first High Pressure Freezer in New Zealand and was funded by Lottery Health Research, the Otago School of Medical Sciences and the Department of Anatomy. There are already 8 projects using the freezer, involving looking at bee antennae, blood vessels, and zebrafish.


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Submarine Volcano Project Wins EM Student Award

Congratulations to Arran Murch who has received the April 2016 EM Student Award for his project "Implications of ash-particle characteristics for fragmentation during a big explosive submarine eruption". The award entitles the winner to 15 hours electron microscope time which Arran will use on the Zeiss SEM to image ash particles from submarine volcanic eruptions and measure the population, texture and size range of the bubbles. He will also use EBSD techniques on to quantify crystals of ash grains. Submarine eruptions account for around 85% of the total volcanic activity on earth but are underrepresented in the literature. Better understanding how magma evolves during ascent will lead to better predictions and mitigation of eruption hazards. Arran is a PhD student in the Geology Department and is supervised by Professor James White. The closing date for the next EM Student award is the 1st of September. For more information about the award and application forms visit the EM Student Award webpage.

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