Composite Probes and Use Thereof in Super Resolution Microscopy

The technology is in the field of fluorescence microscopy. More specifically, the invention describes and claims the composite probes for super resolution optical techniques using super resolution via transiently activated quenchers (STAQ). The composite probes include a donor moiety and an acceptor moiety joined by a linker. The acceptor moiety, when excited by incident radiation, is excited to a state which, for example, absorbs in the donor emission region, such that the acceptor moiety in its excited state quenches at least a portion of the donor moiety emission. Other transiently activated quenching mechanisms and moieties could accomplish the same task by reducing donor population. Also disclosed are methods for irradiating a selected region of a target material including the composite probe, wherein the composite probe enables improved resolution by point spread function modification.

Potential Commercial Applications: Competitive Advantages:
  • Ultrafine imaging for biomolecules, vesicles and organelles, particularly of living biological samples, in biomedical research
  • Potential applications in clinical diagnostics
  • Nanoscopic Lithography - STAQ composites could, in principle, control polymerization of photoresist masks to make feature sizes below 20nm
 Improved ultrafine imaging –
  • Imaging objects as small as 10 nm
  • Narrow the point spread function
  • STAQ uses less power, making live cell study practical at theoretically high resolution

Development Stage:
  • The invention is fully developed
  • Need to build multicolor palette that can be integrated into a commercial microscope
  • May need to make certain protein chimeras and photoinitiators for validation


Jay Knutson (NHLBI)  ➽ more inventions...

Gary Griffiths (NHLBI)  ➽ more inventions...

Intellectual Property:
PCT Pat: 8,547,533 issued 2013-10-01
US Pat: 9,273,089 issued 2016-03-01
US Application No. 13/519,737 filed on 2012-06-28
US Application No. 13/967,851 filed on 2013-08-15

Doose S, et al. PMID 17956989
Schuler B, et al. PMID 15699337
Best RB, et al. PMID 18029448
Sahoo H, et al. PMID 17629273
Li L, et al. PMID 19359543
Hell SW. PMID 19525330
Masia F, et al. PMID 19529713
Schmidt R, et al. PMID 19459703

Collaboration Opportunity:

The National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, Laboratory of Molecular Biophysics, is also seeking statements of capability or interest from parties interested in collaborative partnerships to further develop, evaluate, or commercialize this technology. Please contact Brian Bailey, Ph.D. at for more information.

Licensing Contact:
Michael Shmilovich, J.D.
Phone: 301-435-5019

OTT Reference No: E-253-2009-0
Updated: Mar 21, 2013