Leica Microsystems and Koheras A/S sign agreement

JANUARY 23--Leica Microsystems CMS GmbH (Wetzlar, Mannheim, Germany; www.leica-microsystems.com) and Koheras A/S (Birkerød, Denmark) have signed a nonexclusive license agreement on several of Leica's fundamental patent rights relating to the use of supercontinuum sources in a multitude of applications.

JANUARY 23--Leica Microsystems CMS GmbH (Wetzlar, Mannheim, Germany; www.leica-microsystems.com) and Koheras A/S (Birkerød, Denmark) have signed a nonexclusive license agreement on several of Leica's fundamental patent rights relating to the use of supercontinuum sources in a multitude of applications. The agreement will entitle Koheras to produce and sell supercontinuum light sources patented by Leica Microsystems. Koheras will supply Leica Microsystems with light sources for use in confocal microscope systems in the future.

According to this agreement, Koheras will also be entitled to market this technology for all other applications outside microscopy. By using a supercontinuum source, a system user can tune the wavelength to the optimal absorption and is not limited to the historical laser wavelengths, which were not usually at the absorption peak. Another advantage is that just one supercontinuum source can replace many discrete lasers at the same time. Supercontinuum technology is useful for illumination and fluorochrome excitation in microscopy, particularly in confocal laser scanning microscopy.

Koheras A/S designs, develops, and manufactures high-quality fiber lasers and systems. It is 100% owned by NKT Holding A/S Denmark

In other news, Leica Microsystems has won its third German Business Innovation Award. On January 21, president Wolf-Otto Reuter and Thomas Zapf, director scientific relations, received the award in Frankfurt. The company won the award in the medium-sized business category.

The award was for a high-resolution microscope with 4Pi technology--the Leica TCS 4PI. With this microscope, submicroscopically small structures in living cells and cell organelles can be imaged in 3-D with clearer detail and more structural information than other light microscope on the market. It provides basic research with a tool to find out new information on protein-based diseases.

4Pi technology, which overcomes the barriers of light microscopy, was invented by Stefan Hell, director of the Max Planck Institute of Biophysical Chemistry, and developed for the market by Leica Microsystems. The object of investigation is enclosed by two high-quality objectivesarranged opposite each other. This means that the object can be observed with a practically complete spherical wave. Applied to fluorescence microscopy, this leads to a three to seven times narrower focus along the microscope axis. The result is a resolution of less than 100 nm, a dimension where key life processes take place.

More in Life Sciences