Features of microtomes
Though there are a number of different types of microtome, they all have a relatively similar design and features. They will have an area where you will place the sample that you need to slice. They will also feature a blade. The blades can be made from glass, metal, or even diamond. As mentioned, some of the devices utilize lasers.
How microtomes work
Those using a sled microtome will hold the material in a sliding shuttle. They can then move the material across the blade’s surface, which will slice away a small part of it. Preparation of some samples will require infusion of an epoxy or paraffin in order to turn the sample into a solid. A rotary microtome allows for sectioning to take place in a liquid nitrogen chamber. A laser microtome is another option. This allows the user to create very precise cuts. It can work well for soft tissue samples, as well as for harder materials, such as bone. One of the benefits of using the laser microtome is that it eliminates needing to touch the sample physically, which reduces the chance of any contamination.
A microtome is a specialized device used to cut material of different types into extremely thin slices so that they can be used as sample specimens. Those who use one of these devices generally do so to get specimens that they will then be able to look at beneath a microscope. There are many different types and styles of these devices available, as they have different cutting components. This is because they need to be able to cut through many different types of materials.
- Biological science and histology
- Laboratory research
- Physitemp Instruments, Inc.
- Thermo Scientific