MDI Biological Laboratory
MDI Science Café

Magnifying Discovery: A Closer Look at Microscopy at MDIBL

  • June 13, 2022
  • 5:00 - 6:00 pm
  • Online

While scientific images are often stunning from an artistic point of view, for scientists, the value of these images is in the answers they can provide to complex research questions. Join Frédéric Bonnet, Ph.D., manager of the MDI Biological Laboratory Light Microscopy Facility (LMF); Marko Pende, Ph.D., a postdoctoral researcher in the Murawala Lab; and Karissa Tilbury, Ph.D., Assistant Professor at University of Maine in Chemical and Biomedical Engineering as they discuss their uses of microscopy.

Microscopes are vital research tools that allow scientists to see the tiniest parts of our world—small structures within larger objects and even the molecules that are the building blocks of all matter. Being able to observe these otherwise invisible things underpins our ability to learn more about the world around us, and especially how basic biological mechanisms of the body function.

MDIBL’s Frédéric Bonnet, Ph.D., and Marko Pende, Ph.D., will be joined by biomedical engineer Karissa Tilbury, Ph.D., of UMaine to discuss how microscopes influence their approach to research and educational outreach. This June, the trio will lead a new INBRE funded course for Maine scientists at every level. Sharing imaging techniques, Bonnet, Pende, and Tilbury will demonstrate how technical decisions impact final images.

Frédéric Bonnet, Ph.D.
Manager of the MDIBL Light Microscopy Facility, Bonnet strives to ensure that users have up-to-date training to gain information that is helpful to their research. Bonnet holds a Ph.D. in Neurobiology and cell biology from Paul Sabatier University–Toulouse III in France. During Bonnet’s Ph.D. studies, he developed an unshakable fascination with the technology he used to image his work on chicken spinal cord cells. Bonnet has acquired significant theoretical and practical experience in light microscopy.

Marko Pende, Ph.D.
A postdoctoral researcher in the Murawala Lab, Pende is focused on regeneration in axolotls and how the nervous system outside the brain and spinal cord affects regrowing an amputated limb. Pende completed his Dr. rer. nat (equivalent to a Ph.D., awarded by some German universities) in biomedical engineering at the Technical University of Vienna, Austria. Pende has extensive experience using custom-built light-sheet microscopes and is skillful at tissue clearing (using chemical techniques to make tissue transparent) which allows deeper observation while maintaining image clarity, to provide stunning microscopy images.

Karissa Tilbury, Ph.D.
Tilbury is an assistant professor of Chemical and Biomedical Engineering at University of Maine. She is passionate about teaching student’s microscopy techniques to ensure high quality, reproducible, quantitative data is captured by all who use a microscope as part of their scientific process. Tilbury holds a Ph.D. in Bioengineering and Biomedical Engineering at University of Wisconsin-Madison.