Fast widefield imaging of neuronal structure and function with optical sectioning in vivo

Ziwei Li, Qinrong Zhang, Shih Wei Chou, Zachary Newman, Raphaël Turcotte, Ryan Natan, Qionghai Dai, Ehud Y. Isacoff, Na Ji

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Scopus citations


Optical microscopy, owing to its noninvasiveness and subcellular resolution, enables in vivo visualization of neuronal structure and function in the physiological context. Optical-sectioning structured illumination microscopy (OS-SIM) is a widefield fluorescence imaging technique that uses structured illumination patterns to encode in-focus structures and optically sections 3D samples. However, its application to in vivo imaging has been limited. In this study, we optimized OS-SIM for in vivo neural imaging. We modified OS-SIM reconstruction algorithms to improve signal-to-noise ratio and correct motion-induced artifacts in live samples. Incorporating an adaptive optics (AO) module to OS-SIM, we found that correcting sample-induced optical aberrations was essential for achieving accurate structural and functional characterizations in vivo. With AO OS-SIM, we demonstrated fast, high-resolution in vivo imaging with optical sectioning for structural imaging of mouse cortical neurons and zebrafish larval motor neurons, and functional imaging of quantal synaptic transmission at Drosophila larval neuromuscular junctions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbereaaz3870
JournalScience Advances
Issue number19
StatePublished - May 2020
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank M. Jacobs for assistance with the brain slices preparation and all members of the Ji lab for the helpful discussions and support. We thank E. Carroll for help with electronics. We thank J. Lv for help with the derivation of Eq. (4). This work was sponsored by the NIH (Q.Z., R.T., and N.J., U01 NS103573; S.-W.C., Z.N., and E.Y.I., U01 MH109069) and the Defense Advanced Research Project Agency (S.-W.C., Z.N., and E.Y.I., N66001-17-C-4015). Z.L. was supported by the China Scholarship Council (CSC) program.

Publisher Copyright:
Copyright © 2020 The Authors,


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