A primary goal of Punarbasu’s research is to synthesize and characterize a family of polymers rationally designed to efficiently deliver nucleic acid payloads into mammalian cells. To hone his research knowledge and tool kit, Punarbasu participated in a Confocal Microscopy Workshop July 6-8, 2022. The workshop was hosted by the University of Minnesota, University Imaging Centers (UIC). Confocal microscopy is an advanced imaging technique that provides 3D structures of biological samples, such as cells and tissues, which can be studied in great detail.
By participating in the workshop, Punarbasu gained valuable skills and knowledge that will enable him to further research how the polymers he has synthesized interact with cell membranes and where the polymers localize inside cells. In turn, he can then investigate how these activities correlate with the efficiency of polymers to deliver genetic material into cells. “Overall, the training received in the workshop has enabled me to perform confocal microscopy experiments on my own to gain better insight into polymer-mediated gene delivery processes,” said Punarbasu.
From attending the workshop, Punarbasu learned in detail about various aspects of confocal microscopy including sample preparation, image acquisition, and data analysis. The workshop also introduced him to the advanced experiments that can be performed in the instruments present at the UIC, which has the reputation of being a Nikon Center of Excellence.