This is a brief and necessarily very sketchy presentation of the evolution in electron microscopy (EM) imaging that was driven by the necessity of extracting 3-D views from the essentially 2-D images produced by the electron beam. The lens design of standard transmission electron microscope has not been greatly altered since its inception. However, technical advances in specimen preparation, image collection and analysis gradually induced an astounding progression over a period of about 50 years. From the early images that redefined tissues, cell and cell organelles at the sub-micron level, to the current nano-resolution reconstructions of organelles and proteins the step is very large. The review is written by an investigator who has followed the field for many years, but often from the sidelines, and with great wonder. Her interest in muscle ultrastructure colors the writing. More specific detailed reviews are presented in this issue.
Transmission EM, High Voltage EM, Cold Stages, Single Particle Analysis