Microbeam Training Course at RARAF

These courses are designed to provide training and expertise to scientists interested in the use and development of microbeam facilities for research in biology, radiation biology, and radiation physics. The 2012 course followed the 10th International Workshop: Microbeam Probes of Cellular Radiation Response hosted by RARAF on March 15-17, 2012.

Sponsored by the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering (NIBIB), the three-day course was offered to a limited group of scientists selected by an open, competitive application process. Applications were welcome from graduate students, postdoctoral fellows and faculty with an interest in the use and development of microbeam facilities. Both foreign nationals and U.S. citizens may apply. This intense program is taught by leading Columbia University biologists and physicists who are pioneers in the development and use of microbeam technologies.

Day 1: Lectures

  • Introduction to Microbeams: These presentations are designed to give biologists an understanding of microbeam physics and physicists an understanding of biology requirements and applications.
    • Why microbeams?
    • Physics of microbeams: from accelerator to targeting.
    • Biology of microbeams: specimens, endpoints and motivations.
  • Tour of RARAF microbeam facilities
  • Designing and building a microbeam
  • Designing a microbeam experiment
  • Day-to-day issues running a microbeam
  • Preparing cells for irradiation

Day 2: Demonstrations and hands-on experience

  • Set up the microbeam: scan the beam spot size, focus the beam, locate the beam spot
  • Imaging procedures
  • Irradiate cells: operate microbeam for different irradiation protocols
  • On-line/off-line analyses

Day 3: Demonstrations and hands-on experience (Cont.), discussions and final lectures

  • Data gathering, processing and analysis
  • Microbeam facility development
  • User facility interface
  • User community development