Time-Lapse Imaging

Time-Lapse Imaging

Time-lapse imaging technology is a powerful, versatile and continuously developed imaging tool that can take continuous images at regular points in time to capture the dynamics of the things being observed. Live cell time-lapse imaging can monitor the response of live cells during a certain period of time and generate a large amount of image-based information to quantify the behavior of cell populations.

Live cell time-lapse imaging.Figure 1.Live cell time-lapse imaging.

Time-lapse imaging technology has significant advantages in observing and studying cell migration. One of the biggest advantages is that it is a high-throughput and non-invasive tool for studying cells. CD BioSciences has advanced imaging equipment and a service support team with rich experience in the imaging field, and can provide you with high-quality live cell time-lapse imaging services to study cell migration, cell proliferation, etc. If you have any needs, please feel free to contact us.

Requirements of Time-Lapse Imaging

In live-cell time-lapse imaging experiments, cells need to remain viable and healthy. Therefore, physiological conditions must be established and maintained on the microscope to better understand the biodynamic mechanism within the cell.

Environment Stable conditions (e.g., temperature, humidity, light, and vibrations)
Stage top incubator Precise and stable control of physiological parameters:
Temperature, humidity, CO2 levels, O2 levels (optional)
Compatible with:
Microscope (microscope table, objective)
Cell culture vessels being used
Fluorescence staining Non-invasive
Highly photostable
Requires low photon dose (less phototoxicity) for detectability
Microscope Inverted microscope; configuration depends on experimental setup
Camera for time-lapse image acquisition
Motorized stage for parallel image acquisition
Autofocus (hardware- or software-based)
Secured against vibrations
Image acquisition High signal-to-noise ratio
Low photon dose
Adequate resolution (depends on experimental setup)
Computer and data storage Hardware suitable for quick storage of huge amounts of data
Software for data analysis

Application of Time-Lapse Imaging

Investigating cell migration in chemotaxis assays or wound healing assays
Studying or identifying stem cells and embryo and their development
Measuring cell proliferation over time
Studying angiogenesis with tube formation assays

Suggestions for Achieving High Cell Viability with Good Signal-to-Noise Ratio

Minimize the exposure time of each image
Maximize the time between cell restoration images
Minimize the intensity of excitation
A highly sensitive microscope camera is used to optimize the signal-to-noise ratio
Match the fluorescent filter and fluorophore as much as possible
Use longer wavelengths (e.g., green or red) instead of ultraviolet or blue light excitation to reduce phototoxic effects
The best signal detection can be achieved by using the objective lens with the highest numerical aperture
Antioxidants were added to the cell culture medium


  1. Collins J L, Van Knippenberg B, Ding K, et al. Time-Lapse Microscopy[J]. Cell Culture, 2018, 3: 45-73.

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Please note: Our services can only be used for research purposes. Do not use in diagnostic or therapeutic procedures!

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