The Aaron Klug Centre for Imaging and Analysis

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Training offered by the Unit

The EMU is without doubt the prime intellectual resource for Biological electron microscopy in South Africa. The Unit offers a very broad range of expertise in relevant modern areas, and offers a one week Honours course - "Introduction to Microscopy for Biologists" - and a seven week course in Structural Biology covering cryo-TEM and 3D image reconstruction. Significant one-on-one training is also offered by the Unit.

TEM User Training

At present the demand for the use for the use of the TEM is such that new users are usually instructed individually by their supervisors or by Mohamed Jaffer (who is the EM Officer responsible for TEM applications). If there is demand for it we will certainly develop a systematic course covering various aspects of TEM - It would certainly be beneficial to the graduate students who often leave with very limited insights into the technology that they spend most of their time using. Please e-mail us at or send us an enquiry through our online enquiry form if you would like such a course to be run and also what specific topics you would like covered.

SEM User Training

Should you need training please enquire at the Unit about the scheduling of individual training, carried out by Miranda Waldron (the EM Officer responsible for SEM applications). Training consists of an initial session where you are familiarised with basic Electron Microscopy and the software on the SEM. At the next session, you will undergo hands-on training under supervision, using your own samples. This will continue until you are competent and able to be left alone. Regular user charges will be charged whilst you are learning to use the SEM.

Microscopy for Biologists

This course is an introductory overview of capabilities of LM, SEM, TEM and Image Analysis aimed at biological and medical Honours students. It lasts four to five days and is run three or four times per year. Many of the courses are by arrangement with particular departments and the syllabus is tuned to the needs of those students, however anyone wishing to do the course may attend subject to space being available. The space limit is about 12 students per course. Please enquire about costs for registered students. Some lectures for this course are available online.

Embedding and Ultramicrotomy

Those staff and students needing to use embedding and ultramicrotomy in their research work can request individual tuition. It takes less than a week to become an expert. There is no charge for this service but regular user charges will be charged while you are learning. Lecture 2 of the Microscopy for Biologists course covers embedding and sectioning, among others.

Fluorescence and flow cytometry tutorials

An excellent set of animated tutorials covering fluorescence, filters, light sources, flow cytometry and flow cytometry data analysis can be found on the website of Invitrogen Molecular Probes: