Advanced Light Microscopy Italian Node

The Italian ALM Node is a large multi-modal and multi-sited Node that comprises five imaging facilities located in Naples, Genoa, Padua, Florence and Milan.

The Italian ALM Node is a large multi-modal and multi-sited Node that comprises five imaging facilities located in:

Naples: Institute of Biochemistry and Cell Biology (
Genoa: Italian Institute of Technology (
Padua: Laboratory of CA2+ and cAMP signaling in physiology and pathology (
Florence: European Laboratory for Non-linear Spectroscopy, LENS (
Milan: Advanced Light and Electron Microscopy Bio-Imaging Centre (Alembic) (

These facilities have a long experience of mutual interaction and collaboration. The Node is coordinated by the Institute of Biochemistry and Cell Biology, Naples, an institute belonging to the National Research Council of Italy. The Node provides open-access imaging services to both academia and industry and serves about 1000 users annually. While each location provides access to a wide range of technologies, they also specialize in one or two specific technologies as listed below. The Node offers a complete service package starting from sample preparation and imaging to final image analysis, quantitation and visualization.

Specialties and expertise of the Node

The facilities of this Node offer a broad range of services but they specialize in particular in the following technologies and research areas:


  • Naples: Correlative light electron microscopy with 3D imaging, correlative microscopy with FRET imaging
  • Genoa: Super-resolution, multiphoton and fast volumetric imaging
  • Padua: Functional imaging, FRET-based imaging, FRAP, Two-photon microscopy in living cells, tissues and animals
  • Florence: Non-linear microscopy, functional imaging in animals and structural imaging of cleared and expanded samples (human and animal), 2D - 3D single molecule localization and tracking
  • Milan: Correlative microscopy with 3D tomography, large sample imaging, high-throughput microscopy and in-flow microscopy

Research applications

  • Naples: Cell biology, membrane trafficking, signaling, cancer biology
  • Genoa: Development of novel technologies and instruments for advanced diagnostics from the nano- to the macro-scale
  • Padua: Signaling, neurobiology, intracellular signaling molecules real time imaging, two-color microscopy, biosensors generation and characterization
  • Florence: Human and mouse brain connectome reconstruction, Neurodegenerative diseases, Remapping of lost functions after stroke, Clearing specimens, Multimodal fiber-probe spectroscopy for tissue diagnostics, Bacterial biofilm
  • Milano: Cell biology, Neuroscience, Oncology, Immunology, Gene and Cell Therapy
The member groups also have experience with a wide spectrum of model systems including mammalian cell culture systems, insect cell culture systems, and model organisms like Drosophila, Zebrafish and mouse and also with handling human tissue samples.

Offered Technologies:

ISIDORe is a Horizon Europe funded project that brings together 154 partners from 32 countries around the world, and is designed to effectively support research on infectious diseases and increase preparedness for pandemic.

Deconvolution widefield microscopy (DWM)
Laser scanning confocal microscopy (LSCM/CLSM)
Spinning disk confocal microscopy (SDCM)
Structured illumination microscopy (SIM)*
Two-photon microscopy (2P)
Image Scanning microscopy (ISM)
Total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy (TIRF)
Single Molecula localisation microscopy (SMLM)
Stimulated emission depletion microscopy (STED)
Light-sheet mesoscopic imaging (SPIM or dSLSM)
Raman Spectroscopy (RS)
Second/Third Harmonics Generation (SHG/THG)
High throughput microscopy/high content screening (HTM/HCS)
Fluorescence (cross)-correlation spectroscopy (FCS/FCCS)
Voltage/pH/Ion Imaging *
Fluorescence Resonance Energy Transfer (FRET)
Fluorescence Recovery After Photobleaching (FRAP)
Fluorescence Lifetime Imaging Microscopy (FLIM)
Expansion Microscopy *
Tissue Clearing (TC)*
TEM of chemical fixed samples (TEM)
EM tomography
serial section TEM
Pre-embedding immunolabelling (pre-embed IL)
Pre-embed CLEM
Pre-embeded CLEM
Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM)*
Mass spectrometry-based imaging* (MSI)

Additional services offered by the Node

  • Support in experimental design
  • Technical assistance to use the microscopes
  • Practical training courses
  • Cell culture facilities
  • Wet lab space
  • Animal facilities
  • Data processing and analysis
  • Biosensors generation and characterization

Instrument highlights

The members of the Italian ALM Node are also involved in the development of novel imaging methods, instrumentation and reagents. These include:

  • Naples: FRET-based methods to detect large multi-molecular complexes, Raman microscopy, image analysis methods and microfluidics
  • Genoa: Super-resolution microscopy, fast volumetric light sheet, Expansion Microscopy, correlative light - atomic force microscopy (AFM-STED)
  • Padua: functional imaging, genetically encoded and chemical probes for functional imaging of intracellular signaling molecules and metabolites, whole brain and tissue two-photon microscopy
  • Florence: functional imaging, Raman imaging, whole brain and tissue expansion imaging
  • Milan: Correlative light Microscopy methods, High-throughput microscopy approaches and image analysis

Contact details

Alberto Luini
Coordinator of the Italian ALM Node
+39 081 6132 535
Seetharaman Parashuraman
Head, Bioimaging facility, IBBC-CNR
+39 081 6132 283

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