UCSF Microscopy Core
The Microscopy Core [Biological Imaging Development Center (BIDC)] -- consolidates, enhances and disseminates resources and expertise in tissue and cell imaging technologies. Advanced and routine microscopy instruments, training and assistance with image collection and image analysis are available directly within the Center. The Core consists of instruments consolidated from a variety of UCSF departments including the Diabetes Center, Pathology and SABRE, with the costs of maintaining sophisticated equipment shared across its many users through a recharge system. Services and instrumentation are available to be scheduled and utilized by all UCSF labs and affiliates following proper training.
The Biological Imaging Development Center is an interdisciplinary center configured to assemble, test, and apply emerging light microscopy techniques and technologies. It is designed to serve two roles: a conduit for new optical imaging technology and as a site for technology development. The center also seeks to provide centralized space, personnel, and technical tools toward advancing optical imaging in the biological sciences.
The BIDC is currently operating 3 programs for the UCSF community.
The Instrument Incubator Program
We operate an Instrument Incubator model whereby microscope owners can locate shared instruments which the center maintains and administers for a nominal fee. Under this model the owners retain some autonomy over the instrument's fate, but are relieved of the burden of daily oversight, user training, and administration. This policy also provides a mechanism for others in the wider community to gain limited access for supervised pilot studies.
Assisted Pilot Experiment Program
The BIDC seeks to encourage new users and labs to explore the power of imaging technologies. These groups can 'subscribe' to the BIDC for unlimited use of workstations and imaging software, consulting expertise, and limited access (i.e. "Assisted Pilot Experiment" program) to a range of center instruments. These use of instruments is at the discretion of their respective owners; however, these groups have previously agreed to the 10% free-use rule. This mechanism is meant to allow an instrument and associated center expertis to be transferable to the wider community without a large startup cost.
SABRE/BIDC Instrumentation Development Initiatives
The BIDC fulfills a dedicated role in supporting ongoing and cutting-edge imaging for the Sandler-Asthma Basic REsearch (SABRE) community and selected labs that are in need of ongoing advances in imaging technology. As such, the BIDC/SABRE personnel dedicate approximately 50% of effort toward training supporting personnel from these groups and providing a new pipeline of technologies. In some cases, these technologies will be shared via the 'Instrument Share Policy' after a period of beta testing and/or a period dedicated to the primary aims. The SABRE imaging center is also a member of the 'Owners Consortium' for a selection of instruments.