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Manchester start-up creates world’s most powerful optical microscope

17:37 EDT 20 Jun 2017 | BioNow

LIG Nanowise, based at Manchester Science Park, specialise in microscope technology aimed at the industrial, medical and research and development sectors.The NANOPSIS has super resolution microsphere amplified lens - which will allow scientists to see objects the size of a virus. The new technology combines traditional optical microscopy with tiny particles, called transparent microspheres, that magnify images.This level of detailed imaging is vital for researchers working at the forefront of drug discovery, oncology, and virology, with advanced materials such as graphene and the latest microchip technologies. This has traditionally required expensive equipment only found in universities, large corporations or specialist centres. High demand for these facilities means turnaround for sample imaging can be slow – adding days or weeks to tight timescales – as well as being unreliable and costly.Professor Lin Li, chairman of LIG Nanowise, the team behind the innovation, explains: “Researchers can use our microscope to validate samples and carry out routine work in their own laboratory without having to waste valuable time booking into an imaging centre. “This is because unlike other super-resolution technologies, which require a huge amount of expertise, NANOPSIS can be used by anyone with basic undergraduate scientific training – making it fast, convenient and highly cost effective.“Equally important, is the fact that these reliable, repeatable imaging results are delivered at the frontline of research, rather than part of a disjointed process in an inaccessible centre. "Our aim is to make super-resolution imaging more accessible to researchers across the globe.”Rowena Burns, CEO of Manchester Science Partnerships, added: “It’s great to see another yet another home-grown company flourish in the MSP community and we’re delighted to help them launch their latest product. LIG Nanowise is a perfect example of how brilliant academic science can be combined with commercial ambition to push the boundaries of innovation, and benefit society in doing so.”LIG Nanowise has also been working with the Business Growth Hub to engage with the city’s research community. By linking up with the Hub, the start-up was able to access experts at Aston University, Birmingham University, Manchester Metropolitan University, the Manchester Museum and the University of Manchester, which are now actively working with LIG Nanowise.Alex Sheppard, commercial director of LIG Nanowise, said: “It was critical for us to validate our technology through working with the universities to engage closely with end-users in the research sector.” LIG Nanowise are due to launch NANOPSIS at CityLabs next Thursday.

Original Article: Manchester start-up creates world’s most powerful optical microscope

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