Mitsubishi P91DW User`s manual

AlphaImager™ IS-2200
For Windows 2000/XP
PN: 94-11814-00, Rev. D
®
AlphaImager 2200 –
AlphaEaseFC User’s Manual
Ignore all the camera and acquisition references if you are an AlphaEaseFC Stand Alone software user
Table of Contents
Page
Introduction and Setup
Introduction to AlphaImager 2200
.............................................................................…
AlphaImager Imaging System Setup .............................................................................
Computer, Camera and Peripherals Installation ….........................................................
AlphaImager 2200 System Quick Guide .......................................................................
System Information
.........................................................................................................
Acquiring an Image ........................................................................................................
Capturing Images Using the Movie Mode
Basic System Operation
Basic Imaging Functions ................................................................................................
Contrast Adjustment
Black, White and Gamma Levels
Auto Contrast
Reverse
The Grid Function
Linear, Log and Equal Adjustments
Color Imager Adjustment
Tool Bar Functions ..…….……………………………………………..……………………
Open
Save/Save As
Zoom In/Out
Saturation
Image Drag
Print
Notepad
Reset
Clear
Print
Tool Box Functions ………………......................................................................................
Status Bar …………………………………………..............................................................
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Drop Down Menus
File Menu ……................................................................................................................
File Open
File Overlay
File Close
File Save and Save As
Print Setup
Print
Logoff
Exit
Edit Menu ……...............................................................................................................
Edit Activation
Copy and Crop
Reset and Clear
Image Menu ....................................................................................................................
Equalize
Arithmetic
Conversion
Flat Field Calibrate
Resize
Image Info
The Setup Menu …...……...............................................................................................
Save Defaults
Load Defaults
Security
Print Image Info
Print Mode
Print Date
Preferences
The Overlay Menu …….……………………………………………………………….
What is an Overlay?
Saving Overlay
Loading Overlay
Loading/Saving Spot Denso Overlays
The Utilities Menu ……...…..………………………………………………………….
Explorer
Notepad
The View Menu ……..…………………………………………………………………
Zoom Functions
Show Annotations
The Help Menu ……..….……………………………………………………………..
On-line Note
About
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Table of Contents
Image Enhancement
The Zoom Tool …...........................................................................................................
The Rotate / Flip Tool ………………............................................................................
Histogram .......................................................................................................................
Automatic Enhancement ….............................................................................................
Annotations ….................................................................................................................
Object Attributes
Drawing Tools
Editing Tools
False Color …..................................................................................................................
Gray Scale
Saturation
Other Palettes
Image Filters …...............................................................................................................
General Information
Specific Filter Algorithms
The Undo Button
Sample Results
Movie Mode …………………………………………………………………………...
Movie Controls
Saving an Individual Image from a Movie
Quantitation
The Image Analysis Tools in the Tool Box ....................................................................
Analyzing Arrays ............................................................................................................
Introduction
Setting up an Array Template
Analyze Arrays with Circles or Squares
Aligning the Template
Specifying Areas to be Measured
Measuring Density
The Invert Box
Removing Background
Outputting Data
Molecular Weight Calculation
........................................................................................
Introduction
Entering Known Molecular Weights for Markers
Calculating Molecular Weights of Unknown Bands
Using the Molecular Weight Standards Library
Outputting Data
Special Functions
1D-Multi (Line Densitometry)
........................................................................................
Setting up the Lane Template
Specifying the Scan Width
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Scanning the Image
Adjusting Automatic Peak Detection Parameters
Editing Peaks
Adjusting the Baseline
Interpreting 1D-Multi Data
Molecular Weight, Mass and Band Scoring Integrated into 1D-Multi
Outputting Quantitative Data
Output 1D-Multi Data
Exiting 1D-Mult
Auto Lane
Data Table Editing of Auto Lane
Gel Smiling Correction
Band Matching, Similarity Matrix, and Dendrograms
Spot Densitometry ..........................................................................................................
Creating an Object of Interest
Magic Wand and Auto Spot
Manipulating Objects
Spot Density Measurements
Inverting the Image
Calculating Background Values
Calibration Curves for Quantitative PCR
Outputting Quantitation Data
Object Counting ..............................................................................................................
Two Different Types of Objects Can be Counted
Counting Objects Manually
Counting Objects Automatically
Editing Tools
Spot Count Data
Outputting AutoCount Data
Saving and Loading Auto Count Parameters
The Scoring Function ………………………………………………………..………..
Scoring the Sample
Band Scoring
Outputting Scoring Results
Sending a Screen Image to a Printer
Sending Data to a Printer
Sending Data to a Spreadsheet Program
Sending Data to a File
The Ruler Function ........................................................................................................
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A.1
Appendices
B.1
Appendix A: Opening AlphaEase™ Files in Other Software Programs ...................... C.1
Appendix B: Molecular Weight Standards Library Files ............................................. D.1
Appendix C: Security Features .....................................................................................
Appendix D: Cabinet Installation Instructions...............................................................
Alpha Innotech User’s Manual, version 4
Chapter 1: Introduction and Setup
1.1 AlphaImager 2200 Imaging System
The AlphaImager Imaging System is a powerful digital imaging system, ideal for instant
photography of a wide variety of samples. The CCD camera allows imaging of low-light
samples in UV-illuminated, and fluorescent applications.
The instrument is controlled by AlphaEaseFC software, which is designed with ease-ofuse in mind. AlphaEaseFC software performs image analysis and archiving, and can
prepare images for desktop publishing.
AlphaEaseFC software includes tools to optimize the image display by adjusting contrast
automatically or manually. Hard-to-see portions of the image can be clarified by
converting the image from positive to negative, using digital filters, or applying a false
color map. Notes, labels, arrows, lines and other drawing tools can be recorded directly
on the image using the annotation functions available in AlphaEaseFC software.
Annotations are superimposed on the image when a hard copy is printed and can either be
saved as a template file or as part of the image. All of these features are accessible via
convenient on-screen buttons and menus controlled by the mouse.
AlphaEaseFC software also includes a broad array of analysis tools, including molecular
weight calculation, Rf determination, 1-D lane densitometry, 2-D spot densitometry,
quantitative PCR, microtiter plate reading, object distance measuring, gel scoring, and
automatic colony counting.
The AlphaImager System is a complete package, including all the hardware and software
needed for image capture, enhancement and analysis. The system's computer need not be
solely dedicated to AlphaEaseFC software and can also be used to run other software
such as word processing programs, spreadsheets, and desktop publishing software.
Images can be printed using a 256-level gray scale thermal printer or any printer with a
Windows® driver. The low-cost, high-quality prints are ideal for record keeping in lab
notebooks or for publication. A list of journals that have published prints from
AlphaEaseFC software is available from Alpha Innotech.
Images can be archived to the system’s hard disk, floppy disk, Zip or optional Jaz drive,
or to a network drive if applicable.
In section 1.4, there is a condensed instruction sheet, which will be useful if you are
familiar with the program but need to quickly refresh your memory. We suggest you
photocopy the appropriate instruction sheet(s) and post them near the instrument for easy
reference.
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1.1.1 Mouse Functions
The mouse supplied with the AlphaImager System has two buttons. The left button is
used to activate functions and otherwise make selections when using the software. In
some cases, the right mouse button is used to recall or reactivate the function that was
most recently assigned to the left button.
1.1.2 About This Manual
Throughout this manual, different fonts are used to indicate certain things:
This font indicates the name of a button, a menu, or a function found in a menu.
This font indicates an entry that is typed.
Letters or words found between < > refer to keys on the keyboard.
NOTE:
Notes will be used throughout the manual to inform on interesting points and
provide useful hints.
CAUTION:
Cautions will be used to inform the reader of action that may have the potential to
either harm the instrumentation or effect the quality of the data.
WARNING:
Warnings are used to provide special notice of actions that have the potential to
cause harm to the operator.
1.1.3 Questions or Comments?
The staff at Alpha Innotech Corporation wants to help with any questions or comments
about the software. If you have questions or ideas for new software features, please
email us at info@alphainnotech.com, fax us at +1-510-483-3227, or call us at 800-7955556 or +1-510-483-9620. Telephone support is available between 8:00 am and 5:00 pm
Pacific Time.
1.1.4 Starting AlphaEaseFC software
To start AlphaEaseFC Software from Windows, double-click the AlphaEaseFC Software
icon on the windows desktop.
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1.2 AlphaImager Imaging System Setup
1.2.1 System Components
The AlphaImager System includes:
• High-performance CCD camera
• Zoom lens, close-up 2+ diopter lens, and interference filter
• (optional) Computer with keyboard, mouse, and monitor
• Windows operating system (preinstalled)
• AlphaEaseFC image processing and analysis software (preinstalled and calibrated
with computer and hardware system)
• (optional) MultiImage II light cabinet with UV transilluminator and white light folddown transilluminator
• (optional) MultiImage™FC light cabinet with UV transilluminator and white light
fold-down transilluminator
• (optional) wide-angle fast lens
• (optional) epi-illuminating UV lights
• (optional) printer
• (optional) ChromaLight
Check the packing list included with the system to verify that all components have been
received.
1.2.2 System Placement
As with all electrical instruments, the AlphaImager System should be located away from
water, solvents, or corrosive materials, on a table or bench top that is dry and stable.
Further, the system should be placed away from interfering electrical signals and
magnetic fields. If possible, a dedicated electrical outlet should be used to eliminate
electrical interference from other instrumentation in your laboratory.
1.2.3 Cable Connections
The Cable ends and the ports into which they are inserted are keyed or unique for each
connection to eliminate confusion. The connections are pictured and described below.
WARNING
Make sure the power is OFF and all power cords are disconnected while connecting
the cables and setting up the instrument.
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1.3 Computer, Camera and Peripherals Installation
All software, peripheral drivers and operating systems have been pre-installed at the
factory. During the system installation all components should only need to be plugged
into the correct ports
1.3.1 Setting up the Power Strip/Surge Protector
Turn the power switch on the power strip/surge protector off. Plug the power strip/surge
protector into a wall outlet (preferably a dedicated circuit) and then turn the power on.
CAUTION:
Do not plug the DE-500/DE-500FC MultiImage II light cabinet into the same power
strip as the AlphaImager System. Use a separate circuit if possible. The cabinet
needs to be turned on after the operating system has been completely loaded in
order for the software to function optimally.
1.3.2 Setting up the Computer, Monitor, Mouse and Keyboard
The computer will need to have the
monitor, mouse and keyboard connected to
it in the correct ports (see the descriptions
below). Also, a 3 prong standard power
cable should be plugged into the back of the
computer and the power strip.
Connect the monitor’s video cable to the
Monitor port on the back of the computer.
If after market video cards were preinstalled
into your computer system connect the
monitor’s video cable to the video card
connector. Connect the monitor’s power
cable to the power strip.
The Mouse and Keyboard connectors are
color-coded and icon identified. Attach the
Mouse and Keyboard cables to the
connectors on the back of the computer by
matching the colors.
The computer is now ready to be turned on.
Turn the computer on by pushing the power
button on the front of the unit.
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1.3.3 Camera Installation
1) Connect the BNC and serial style connectors to the camera.
2) Complete the camera connection by attaching the other end of the Data Cable to
the computer interface card that came preinstalled in the computer system.
3) A small flat head screwdriver should be used to tighten the connection on top of
the camera and the back of the computer.
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1.3.4 Connecting the Printer
The Mitsubishi P91DW (UB) printer connections are color coded for convenience (see
figure on previous page). Plug the USB cable into the back of the printer and into the
proper USB connector on the back of the computer. Plug in the standard 3 prong power
cable to the back of the printer and to the power strip, then turn the power on.
Note: The Mitsubishi P91DW (UB) printer may be connected to any USB port on
the computer; however, the driver may need to be manually reinstalled.
The Mitsubishi CP700 and CP770 printers connect via the on-board parallel (LPT1) port.
Plug in the standard 3 prong power cable on the back of the printer and into the power
strip, then turn the power on. Set the printer up for color or black and white printing
following the directions in the owners’ manual supplied with the printer.
1.3.5 Connecting the Cabinet
The DE-500 and DE-500FC MultiImage Light cabinets connect to the back of the
computer via an RS232 cable.
Connector on the back
of the computer
Connector on the
back of the cabinet
Ports on the back of the cabinet and computer respectively.
Power on the cabinet after the Windows operating system has fully loaded. The
AlphaImager 2200 Imaging System is now ready for use.
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1.3.6 Starting AlphaImager System with AlphaEaseFC software
To start the AlphaImager 2200 Imaging System software from Windows, double-click
the AlphaImager System icon on the windows desktop.
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1.4 AlphaImager System Quick Guide
Note: This is intended as a quick reference guide for acquisition. For more detailed
information on the individual features reference section 1.6 of this manual.
1. Power on the system:
a. Turn on the computer, monitor, and optional printer.
b. After the computer has booted up completely to the Windows
desktop, turn on the power to the cabinet.
c. The AlphaImager 2200 software is activated by double clicking on the
AlphaImager icon.
2. Positioning and Focusing on the Sample:
a. In the ‘Tool Bar’, select the ‘Acquire’ icon to activate the image acquisition
software features.
b. In the Image Acquisition window, select the
button.
c. Open the door to the cabinet and position your sample on the preferred
illumination source. Fluorescence samples that require epi or transillumination
of UV energy should be placed on the purple UV filter glass. For colorimetric
samples such as protein gels, film, or blots, use the fold-down the white light
table for your sample.
d. Open the aperture on the camera lens all the way open to the smallest number F1.2 - manually or via the software controls for motorized optics.
e. With the door still open to allow light to enter into the cabinet, use the monitor
real time readout display to position and focus your sample in the middle of the
image acquisition window.
f. Adjust the zoom setting manually or via the software controls so that the area of
interest on the sample takes up all of the image size on the screen.
3. Capturing a bright sample like fluorescently labeled gels, colorimetric samples and film:
a. Close the cabinet door.
b. Choose the appropriate optical filter for your sample type:
a. Position #1 for colorimetric gels and film (no filter)
b. Position #2 for ethidium bromide gels
c. Positions #3-5 for other fluorescently labeled gels (optional filters).
c. Turn on the illumination source (UV or white light) using the touch panel or
‘virtual’ software controls.
d. Select the green
e. Select
f. Select
button.
(for details on how to adjust the auto expose settings refer
to section 1.6.3 of the manual)
g. Once the image in expose preview does not contain any saturation (red false
. The
color palette for white bands, green for dark bands) select
exposure bar will turn green when this is complete. If the exposure bar is pink in
color, saturation is still present in the image. For really bright images,
particularly in white light applications, it may be necessary to reduce the aperture
setting until the saturation is removed from the image.
4. Save the original image
a. Click on the Save Image function in the FILE menu or click on the SAVE or
SAVE AS icon in the “ToolBar” window.
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b. Enter a file name and select the directory to which it should be saved (the
directory path should be less than 100 characters).
c. Specify the file format (TIF, BMP, PCX, MAC, color TGA)
d. Click OK to save the file
5. Enhance the display [optional]
a. Adjust the black, white and gamma levels by moving the slider bars at the right
of the image in the “Contrast Adjust” window, or select auto contrast.
b. Apply digital filters, found in the “ToolBox” window under ENHANCEMENT
and FILTERS (to stop a filter, hit any key on the keyboard; to reverse the effects
of a filter, click UNDO).
c. Add text, boxes, arrows, etc. to the image using the annotation tools in the
“ToolBox” window under ENHANCEMENT and ANNOTATE.
6. Print the image using the large PRINT button in the “ToolBar” window or the pull-down
FILE menu option
7. Analyze the sample using the analysis features in “ToolBox”, ANALYSIS for
quantitative analysis
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1.5 System Information
To display system information, select the About option in the Help menu. This button
accesses a pop-up box.
ABOUT Pop-Up Box
This box shows the instrument serial number (where appropriate) and the Software
version number. Use the information specific to your instrument and software when
calling Alpha Innotech for technical support, software upgrades, etc.
To close the box, click on the OK button.
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1.6 Acquiring an Image
In the TOOL BAR window, click on the Camera Acquire icon:
Once the Camera Acquire Icon is pressed, the CAMERA SETUP AND PREVIEW
window is activated to provide exposure control of the camera, all lighting and filter
wheel position controls, contrast display options and cabinet door open/close indicator
using a software ‘virtual control’ menu. Also, Movie Setup is controlled and activated
from this window. This window will open in the Focus control mode activated (blue
button) provide a near real time readout to allow for easy sample positioning and optics
adjustments.
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1.6.1 Focusing on an Image
Focusing on an image in the AlphaImager 2200 AlphaEaseFC software is easy with the
real time display. Simply adjust the parameters on the manual lens, or, if the lens is
controlled via the software, click on the appropriate software control button.
1) To open the aperture, turn the
lens's aperture ring counterclockwise for more light.
Conversely, if the image is too
bright, close the aperture by
turning it clockwise until an
image is visible on the monitor.
2) Then, zoom in on the image so
that the area of interest on the
sample takes up the entire field
of view on the screen.
3) Last, if the image appears
blurry, turn the focusing ring
(lower ring on the lens) until
the sharpest image is obtained.
4) For motorized zoom lenses, use
the software controls to
perform steps 1-3 above.
1.6.2 Control of Optional Motorized Zoom Optics
AlphaEaseFC software controls the Motorized Zoom lens when present. The software
allows you to set the Aperture, Zoom, and Focus from the software acquisition window.
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Turning the Optional Motorized Zoom Lens Software Controls On/Off:
The Software controls for the Motorized Zoom Lens can be turned on and off in the
Innotech.def file. This file is located in the appropriate program directory. Alpha
Innotech’s production facility will turn the controls on or off depending on whether or not
the optional Motorized Zoom lens is purchased. For customers that add the Motorized
Lens to their system after the initial sale, it is necessary to turn the controls on in the
field.
LensCtrlEnable=0
Motorized controls off
LensCtrlEnable=1
Motorized controls on
Additionally, the COM2 port is set by default to off, enabling customers to use the
COM2 port for other applications. To activate the port, remove the semi-colon before the
COM2 port setting line in the Innotech.def file:
;LensCtrl=”COM2:9600,n,8,1” =
COM2 port not activate
LensCtrl=”COM2:9600,n,8,1” =
COM2 port activated
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1.6.3 Auto Exposure and Auto Exposure Setup
The acquisition window for the AlphaImager 2200 imaging system includes a check box
and setup window for Auto Exposure.
Auto Exposure Setup (Auto Exposure Compensation Setting):
4 choices available
• Normal Exposure for image saturation: Use this choice for normal
Colorimetric and Fluorescent imaging.
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•
•
•
Under Exposure for chemilumenescence
Over Exposure for faint band detection.
Custom Exposure Compensation: user definable Exposure Value (EV).
The up/down arrows allow the user to change the EV value by whole units (left up/down
arrows) or by 1/8th (right up/down arrows).
Auto Exposure works in both “Expose Preview” and “Acquire Image” modes. As the
software calculates the correct exposure time you will see the status bar change from red
to yellow and then to green. When it reaches green the software has achieved the correct
exposure time. If the bar turns pink, this is an indication that there is saturated pixels in
the image area at the exposure time calculated.
In Acquire Image mode the image will be acquired when the bar turns green. In Expose
Preview mode the software will continue exposing over and over at that exposure time
until a different mode is selected. If “Acquire Image” is selected after the software has
achieved the correct exposure time in Expose Preview the software will begin acquiring
at the last exposure time calculated in Expose Preview—it does not start the calculation
over from scratch.
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1.6.4 Cabinet Controls - Activating the Light Source and
Selecting a Filter
Use the mouse to click on the desired light source in the ‘virtual’ cabinet control interface
or you can use the controls on the cabinet itself. Both mechanical and software controls
are linked and communicate display setting selections.
Note: There is a slight delay when the button is depressed until the light source is
fully activated.
Standard lighting choices include:
Transillumination White:
Transillumination UV:
Reflective White:
Reflective UV (optional)
ChromaLight (optional)
For protein gels, autorads, film, plates, flasks
For fluorescent gels such EtBr, SYPRO Red, etc.
For colorimetric blots and membranes
For SYBR green, TLC plates, and
Chemifluorescence
For GFP, Fluorescein, SYBR green
You can also select your FILTER to correspond with your sample staining. The options
include:
Filter Position #1:
Filter Position #2:
Filter Position #3 (optional):
Filter Position #4 (optional):
Filter Position #5 (optional):
(optional):
no filter
Ethidium Bromide, colorimetric stains, film,
SYPRO Orange (595nm)
SYBR green (557nm)
Fluorescein, SYBR Gold (520nm)
SYPRO Red, Texas Red (630nm)
Hoechst Blue (460nm)
Note: Each Filter has an approximate bandwidth of +/- 40nm to allow for use with
other fluorescence stains as they are developed. If you have a custom application,
please feel free to contact us directly to explore having a custom filter designed for
your application.
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1.6.5 Use Expose Preview to Set Exposure Time
Once the sample has been positioned and the camera has been focused, close the door to
the MultiImage light cabinet and make sure that the appropriate illumination source is
turned on. Also make sure the cabinet door indicator in the Cabinet Control software
interface indicates CLOSED.
Click on the green EXPOSE PREVIEW button and select the desired exposure time in
the menu options to give the desired image intensity quality. Individual adjustments for
1/30 seconds, seconds, minutes, and hours are available.
•
For most white-light applications, 1/30 second exposure is sufficient with
final adjustments of the aperture for best image quality.
•
For UV fluorescence applications, usually 1/30 to 4 seconds is sufficient and
the aperture should be adjusted fully open, F1.2 for the standard zoom lens.
The ‘show saturation’ option should be selected for these applications.
Note: When the system is switched to EXPOSE PREVIEW mode, the image may
flash or change brightness because the camera collects photons from the image for a
longer period of time before sending the image to the computer’s display readout.
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1.6.6 Optimizing the Gray Scale for Saturation and Contrast
Displays
If an image will be analyzed, it is important that it not be over-saturated (too light) or
under-exposed (too dark). Using Show Saturation, the user can see the areas of the
image that are assigned to each end of the gray scale spectrum, and can adjust the
imaging controls accordingly.
The Show Saturation checkbox (found below the camera control functions) allows the
user to access the Saturation Palette during image acquisition. The Saturation Palette
is a modified gray scale palette in which black (gray level 0) is replaced with green, and
white (gray level 255, 4,095, or 65,535) is replaced with red. With this palette, over- and
under-exposed areas of the image are shown as green or red, while areas within the linear
range of the CCD chip are shown in gray scale.
During image acquisition, note regions of the image that appear red or green. Adjust the
exposure time and/or the camera aperture to minimize the amount of red and green in the
image area. If an image will be quantified, it is especially important that the actual
sample area be neither red nor green. Once you are satisfied with the displayed image,
you may click off the Show Saturation.
The other three selections Chemi Display, Auto Contrast, and Reverse are
visualization tools designed to enhance contrast and provide flexibility in regards to how
the user wishes to view the image. Auto Contrast will display the image with automatic
black, white and gamma adjustments according to the image histogram information
(black/white levels). Reverse will show the sample as a negative by switching the black
and white values. Chemi Display utilizes both the auto contrast and reverse functions as
well as adjusting for gamma. It is intended for use with chemiluminescent samples.
These options are also available in the Movie portion of the acquisition software. It is
important to note that these Contrast Display options are only visualization tools and are
NOT changing the image data that is being acquired by the CCD camera.
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1.6.7
Acquire and Transfer the Image
Once the appropriate image is displayed on the screen, click on the red ACQUIRE
IMAGE button to capture and transfer the image to the AlphaEaseFC software package
for enhancement, archiving, or analysis. The acquired image will be automatically
adjusted by a zoom factor based on the resolution setting to display the image optimally.
Once a satisfactory image has been captured, we suggest saving it as an original file. Use
the Save Image As function in the File menu or click on the Save or Save As Icons.
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1.6.8
Capturing Images Using the Movie Mode
If kinetic, multiplex, color, or chemiluminescence experiments are desired where you
wish to have the system automatically capture several images at preset exposure times,
preset time delay between images, preset lighting sources, and preset filter choices, the
MOVIE box can be clicked in ToolBox, Enhancement Tools. (Movie Setup is also
accessible in camera setup acquisition screen. To access this screen select the acquire
button on the tool bar and then select ‘Movie Setup’ on the acquisition screen.
AlphaEaseFC stand alone software does not include Movie acquisition tools)
‘Movie Setup’ in the
camera setup acquisition
screen
Movie Mode Setup in the Tool Box Enhancement Tools
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Once MOVIE SETUP is selected, a display box will appear for independent control of
all lighting, filters, and exposure delay for each image frame.
The TOTAL FRAMES setup provides you with the
ability to determine how many individual frames
(images) you want for the movie. There is a maximum
of 50 frames (images) and a minimum of 1 frame that
can be captured with each movie.
The FRAME selection is used for setting up the
conditions for each frame (image). For example, if three
(3) images are to be captured, you would choose
FRAME 1 and setup all of the desired lighting and filter
requirements. You can then click on FRAME 2 and
repeat the above. Or, you can click on COPY TO
NEXT to help speed up the setup process. COPY TO
NEXT copies all settings from the previous frame to the
current frame.
Usually, for chemiluminescence
imaging, all lighting is off and the filter wheel is
positioned for the chemiluminescence position for all
frames. Thus, the only variable that is changing from
one frame to the next is the exposure time. In this
situation, COPY TO NEXT is a useful tool to save time
in the setup process.
If you are performing kinetic experiments where you
want to have a predetermined delay between captured
images, then you can use EXP DELAY to configure
this function. The default EXP DELAY is set for the shortest possible delay (19
milliseconds), but can be configured up to 50 minutes between each image. Also, if your
exposure delay and/or exposure time and/or lighting options/filter position is consistent
for the entire movie, then once you setup the first frame, you can select the COPY TO
END selection to automatically choose the first frame settings for the entire movie of
frames (images).
Once the movie is setup to the desired configuration, click on the GO button. The movie
will then begin the image acquisition for each frame of the image. When it is complete,
the movie setup box will disappear and the TOOLBOX window will automatically
configure to the MOVIE tools. This will allow you to playback the movie, save or load
the movie, or record a new movie.
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Once all images have been captured, the above Movie display box will become
displayed. The remaining buttons will perform the following tasks:
REC
PLAY
STOP
PAUSE
REW (rewind)
REV (reverse)
FWD (forward)
DEL (delete)
LOAD
SAVE
Move to Camera Setup and Preview, Movie Record setup
functions to record a movie.
Display a continuous loop ‘movie’ of all of the captured images.
Stop the movie at the current frame display
Pause the playback of the movie at a user defined image
Rewind the movie to the first image
Play the movie in a continuous loop in reverse
Forward the movie to the last image
Delete the movie on the display. THIS FUNCTION WILL NOT
DELETE A MOVIE SAVED TO THE HARD DRIVE.
Load a previously saved movie. THIS FUNCTION WILL NOT
LOAD INDIVIDUAL IMAGES PREVIOUSLY CAPTURED IN
NORMAL CAPTURE MODE.
Save a movie of images.
Saving An Individual Image From a Movie
After you load, play, and stop a movie at the desired image, it is possible to save the
individual image seen on the screen. Use the SAVE AS button located on the tool bar to
save the image in the desired location and file format on the local or network drives.
Note: This will save the current image only. To save the entire movie, select
the ‘save’ icon on the movie tab in the enhancement tools.
Loading/Saving an Entire Movie
You can load or save an entire movie by using the load and save icons in the
movie tab in the enhancement tools. When a movie is loaded the loaded
frames will be seen as blue in the movie reel. When a movie is saved a dialog
box will appear prompting you to select the location and name for the movie that you
would like to save the images as.
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Movie Mode: Save/Load Movie Mode setup routines
Two buttons “Save Setup” and “Load Setup” allow you to save and load all Movie Mode
setup parameters. Files are saved as *.mvf files.
Frame Stacking
At the top of the Movie Set-up window is an option for stacking frames. If this selection
was chosen during acquisition of the image Stack Frames will use all previous exposure
information to sequentially add images to one another. Normal Sequence will not
perform this addition. Please note that stacking frames will increase the noise level in
acquired images.
Sample case:
Capture 5 frames at 1-5 sec exposure for total time elapsed 15 sec
Display after summation of following frames:
Frame 1 (1 sec)
Frame 2 (1 + 2 sec)
Frame 3 (1 + 2 + 3 sec)
Frame 4 (1 + 2 + 3 + 4 sec)
Frame 5 (1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 5 sec)
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Capturing a Color Image Using the Movie Function
A color image can be generated by acquiring three images each taken with a red, green
and blue emission filter. Once saved, these images are then combined in the Overlay
pull down menu. Open the image captured with each of the three filters as instructed and
a RGB (red, green, blue) true color image will be generated.
For color imaging, you will need to the following optional filters:
Red Filter
SYPRO Red Filter
Blue Filter
Hoechst Blue Filter
Green Filter
SYBR Green Filter
Note: For multiplexing with 2 different fluorescent stains, you will need the optional
AIC filters designed for each stain.
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Chapter 2: Getting Started – Basic Imaging Functions
Chapter 2: Getting Started - Basic
Imaging Functions
When the AlphaEaseFC system computer is powered up, you can click on the
AlphaEaseFC icon to automatically open the AlphaEaseFC software. The following
screen appears:
AlphaEaseFC screen, showing the image area and display controls
AlphaEaseFC software has four (4) main control windows for all image acquisition,
enhancement, archiving, and analysis functions:
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2.1 Contrast Adjustment
The Contrast Adjustment window allows for the best visualization possible of a sample
utilizing the black, white, and gamma adjustments, as well as, image reverse and auto
contrast.
The image on the screen is made up of picture elements (pixels) in an array. Each pixel
is assigned a brightness (or a gray scale value) level between black and white. A very
bright image has most of its pixels registering high gray level values and conversely, a
very dark image has most pixels registering low gray level values (approaching zero).
The distribution of these gray values to the image is determined by the Contrast
Adjustment Controls. These controls regulate the Black level, White level, and
Gamma setting (brightness linearity), allowing adjustment of the display to obtain the
best image possible.
Note: These enhancement features modify the image display on the monitor only,
and do not change the original quantitative data.
AlphaEaseFC software can also import RGB color images. The AlphaEaseFC Software
automatically detects this process and the Contrast Adjustment tools are configured for
color image adjustments.
An image can be enhanced using these tools and then saved as a Modified file for
publications. However, to preserve the original image information, it is recommended
that the file be saved as a different file name when using the save modified.
Using the Contrast Adjustment Tools for Grayscale Images
There are three sliding scales found in the image control area to the right of the image.
Below each scale is a box displaying a number that corresponds to the position of the
slider. By adjusting these sliding scales, the image display can be optimized.
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Imaging Display Tools: Black Level, White Level,
Gamma Setting with B/W/G, Linear, Log, and Equalize options
To adjust any of these settings, place the cursor on the slider. Click and hold down the
left mouse button while dragging the slider to a new setting. As the slider is moved along
the scale, the image display is updated, along with the change in numeric value. The
arrows above and below the scale bars can also be clicked to change the settings in single
unit increments, or, the user may type in a specific unit.
Black Level Adjustment
The number beneath the Black Level scale corresponds to a gray level. There can be
256, 4095 or 65,536 possible gray levels depending on the system type. For the example
below, an 8 bit image will be used with 256 total gray scale values. When the Black
slider is at the very top of the scale, the number is 0. As the slider is moved downwards
along the scale, the number increases and the image becomes progressively darker. This
is because all pixels at the specified gray level and lower are shown on the screen as
black pixels. If the slider is set to 0, all the pixels whose gray levels are at 0 are shown as
black. If the setting is then changed to 60, all the pixels between 0 and 60 are shown as
black and the image appears darker.
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Black Level set at 0
Black Level set at 60
White Level Adjustment
The number beneath the White Level scale also corresponds to a gray scale value. When
the slider is at the very bottom of the scale, this number is 255. As the slider is moved
upwards along the scale, the number decreases and the image becomes progressively
lighter. This is because all pixels at the specified gray level value and above are shown on
the screen as white pixels. For example, if the slider is set to 150, all the pixels between
150 and 255 are shown as white and the image appears lighter.
White Level set at 255
White Level set at 150
Gamma Setting Adjustment
Changing the Gamma setting affects the image brightness by adjusting the linearity of
the image on the screen and printouts, but does not affect quantitative data.
The camera sees objects linearly while the human eye does not. When the Gamma
setting is set to a value of 1, the image is displayed as the camera sees it. This, however,
is different from what the human eye detects. By adjusting the Gamma setting, the user
can make the image on the screen correspond to what is seen when he/she looks directly
at the object. We recommend a Gamma setting of 0.55 for best visual representation.
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Gamma set at 1.0
Gamma set at 0.55
The Auto Contrast Selection
The Auto Contrast feature will automatically scale the black and white values of an
image to more tightly fit the gray scale intensity profiles (histogram). This selection will
use different black and white values for different images depending upon their unique
histograms. A more dramatic visual change will take place for low light level images
(such as chemiluminescence) where smaller portions of the histogram are used. This
selection can be turned on or off and will adjust differently for each image.
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The Reverse Button
The Reverse button inverts the gray levels of the displayed image, converting a positive
image to negative, or vice versa. For instance, an image with black bands on a white
background is converted into an image with white bands on a black background by
simply clicking the Reverse button. Clicking the button a second time returns the image
to its original form.
Original Image
Reversed Image
Note: Reversing an image changes the way it is displayed on the screen, but does
not change the quantitative data. For example, the bands in the above gel have the
same density, regardless of whether the gel is displayed as white bands on a black
background or black bands on a light background. For information on reversing
pixel values, see Invert in Chapters 4 and 5.
The Grid Button
The Grid button provides an on-screen grid after image acquisition to check for proper
sample alignment.
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Making Linear, Log, or Equal Adjustments
Original image of film with
default BWG settings
Image of film with linear
Contrast
Adjustments
selected. Linear provides
minimum and maximum
adjustment tools from 0 to
100%. Linear stretches the
grayscale range of the
displayed image to the
maximum system dynamic
range of 0-65,535 grayscales.
Image of film with log
Contrast Adjustments selected
log provides minimum and
maximum adjustment tools
from 0 to 100%.
Log
performs
a
logarithmic
adjustment to the grayscale
range of the displayed image.
Image of film with equal
Contrast Adjustment selected.
Equal automatically adjusts
the image display for
maximum contrast which is
beneficial for faint band
detection.
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Using the Contrast Adjustment Tools for Color Images
AlphaEaseFC software can also import RGB color images. The AlphaEaseFC Software
automatically detects this process and the Contrast Adjustment tools are configured for
color image adjustments.
Contrast Adjustment display with Show thumbnail clicked for color image
The Black, White, and Gamma bars can now be adjusted individually for each of the
three RGB color channels by selecting on the Red, Green, or Blue button and making the
appropriate B/W/G adjustments
Also, by clicking on the Show thumbnail option, a thumbnail display of each of the
three color channels is displayed. These thumbnails also display any black, white, or
gamma adjustments for each color channel.
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2.2 Tool Bar
The Tool Bar window provides intuitive icons for the most common functions in
AlphaEaseFC.
Tool Bar Display Window
The Open icon functions identically to the File Open function in the
upper menu bar. This function is used to open previously saved images.
Detailed instructions are available in Chapter 3.
The Save and Save As icons function identically to the File Save and
File Save As functions in the upper menu bar. This function is used to
save captured images to the desired storage medium. Detailed instructions
are available in Chapter 3.
The Zoom Out and Zoom In icons provide easy zooming ability while
you are active in image enhancement or analysis functions providing
increased versatility. Detailed instructions are available in Chapter 4 as
this function is also available in the Tool Box, Enhancement Tools.
Note: The Status Bar always displays the image zoom setting in real
time.
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The Saturation icon allows for a quick image display of saturation.
Completely saturation black regions (gray scale 0) will turn green and
saturated white regions (ie. gray scale 255, 4095, 65,535) will turn red.
This is a useful tool to check for linearity of an image before analysis
occurs. Saturation is a feature that is most important during the
acquisition stages and is thoroughly detailed in the acquisition features of
the system manuals.
The Image Drag icon is useful for to pan with a zoomed image. To
activate this function, click on the icon and move the mouse cursor to the
image. The cursor will have changed to a small hand. Click the left
mouse button and drag to move the image. When you are done, you can
click the Image Drag icon again to deactivate it.
Note: Image Drag is only active when the image is zoomed in beyond
1X (greater than 100%). The icon is grayed out in other zoom modes.
The Print icon allows for quick and easy image printing with the active
default printer. Detailed instructions on image printing are available in
Chapters 2 and 3 as printing can also be accomplished via traditional
Windows File menu options.
The Notepad icon opens up a dialog box to allow the user to quickly track
experimental conditions, comments, and any other details to be saved as
an electronic copy for future reference. Detailed instructions are available
in Chapter 3 as this Notepad function is duplicated in the Utilities
function in the upper header bar.
Clicking Reset returns the image to the system defaults as specified in the
active default file. This is detailed later in Chapter 3.4 of the manual.
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Clear removes any overlays currently displayed on the image. This
function can be useful if annotations or other displays obscure parts of the
image.
Once an image is displayed, it can be printed on the default printer by
clicking the Print icon in the Tool Bar window display. Most printers can
be configured through the Windows operating system to be the default
printer. Refer to your Windows operating manual for more information on
installing a default printer.
Sample Printouts
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2.3 Tool Box
The Tool Box window contains an intuitive interface for performing all image
enhancement and analysis functions.
Tool Box Display Window
The Enhancement Tools option contains the controls for enhancing and adjusting the
image. This includes software filtering, false colors, zoom factors and other unique
featuers. The Analysis Tools contain the controls for quantitative analysis including gel
smiling corrections, band matching, 1D line densitometry, spot densitometry, molecular
weight calculations, colony counting, and arrays. Both the Enhancement Tools and the
Analysis Tools are detailed in chapters 4 and 5 of the manual respectively.
2.4 Status Bar
The Status Bar is located on the bottom of the monitor and provides a real time display
of the mouse cursor x, y position, the image zoom factor, and the grayscale intensity at
the mouse cursor x, y position.
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Chapter 3: Drop Down Menus
Chapter 3: Drop Down Menus
Across the top of the screen is a Windows menu bar containing several system operation
functions. These include file saving and loading, edit, image, setup, overlay, file utilities,
view and help functions.
AlphaEaseFC Menu Bar
3.1 The File Menu
Use this menu to save an image as a file, retrieve a previously saved image, select
different printers, print an image to a parallel printer, overlay multiple images in RGB
color channels, close an image, log-off of the system or exit the system.
AlphaEaseFC File Pull Down Menu
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File Open
This function opens an image, which has been previously saved as a TIF, GLP, BMP,
PCX, TGA, PIC, JPG or Macintosh® TIFF (MAC) file.
File Open Dialog Box
Using the left mouse button, click on the name of the file to be loaded. That name is then
highlighted in the list and appears in the text box below the File Name prompt.
Alternate disk drives can be accessed using the “Look In” dialog box.
Once the file has been selected, click on the OPEN button to load the file. (Alternatively,
double-click on the file name.) The dialog box disappears and the selected image appears
in the image window on the screen.
To dismiss the dialog box without loading an image, click on the Cancel button.
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File Overlay
To superimpose images, use the OVERLAY function under the File menu. This function
will display separate multiplexed images or a RGB color image as a compiled image with
the appropriate color channel images added together. A simple way to acquire multiple
images for this function is to use the Movie Mode function in image acquisition and
acquire a series of identical images.
The Overlay Images option allows you to overlay up to three different images with three
different color channels. You can select the BROWSE button for each color channel and
select the appropriate images to be used for generating a color image. For example, if
you have a saved grayscale images of an identical gel taken with a SYPRO red filter for
the red stain and a SYBR green filter for the green stain, you can choose these images in
the appropriate Red and Green Channels to generate a composite image with the red and
green colors mapped onto the compiled image.
Note: The images must be the same bit depth and resolution for the software to
overlay the images.
File Close
This function closes the image currently displayed on the screen.
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File Save and Save As
Save allows original images to be saved in several different formats. Save As allows
images that have previously been saved to be saved in a different location or as a
different file type without affecting the original image.
AlphaEaseFC has the ability to save files in several formats, see the following figure:
(i) File Formats: *.tif,
*.bmp, *.glp, *.pcx,
*.tga, *.pic, *.jpg, *.mac,
Enter a new file name in the text box adjacent to the File Name prompt. Next, choose a
file type from the Save As Type list.
AlphaEaseFC will automatically give the appropriate 3-character extension.
AlphaEaseFC will also create a file with the same base name and an .STP extension.
This setup file saves information specific to this file, such as Black Level, White Level,
Gamma Setting and 1D-Multi template placement. If the file is accessed later, these
settings will be recalled.
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File Types:
TIFF is the default file format for AlphaEaseFC files. TIFF is an acronym for "tagged
image file format" and was developed as a flexible and machine-independent graphic file
format. Saving as a TIFF file will allow users to double-click TIFF files from Windows
Explorer and automatically launch the application on any machine that has AlphaEaseFC
loaded on it. Users may customize this in the preferences section covered in section 3.4
of the manual if they wish to change the default file type.
Mac TIFF is the Apple Macintosh® version of the TIFF file format. Mac TIFF files have
the extension .MAC so they can be easily distinguished from Windows TIFF files. Most
software can distinguish between Mac and Windows TIFF formats and can accept either.
AlphaEaseFC offers the option of both formats in the event that only one of the two is
acceptable.
GLP is a proprietary file format that allows changes to only be made in AlphaEaseFC
programs. It will accept 8 bit and 16 bit images and can not be opened in any other
software program.
BMP, PCX, TGA, PIC, JPG, GLP are additional graphic file formats which may be
useful when saving an image for desktop publishing. These file formats can be imported
directly into many Macintosh® and PC programs. (See Appendix A for more
information.) Do not use these formats to save images that will be analyzed later, since
pixel data can be lost or altered when saving files in these formats.
Note: Not all of the file types listed above can be saved as a 16 bit file. Some may
require you to convert the image to an 8 bit file first.
Original versus Modified Files
An Original image file is one in which the data is saved in an unaltered form. This
option should be selected if the image will be analyzed later. If the Black level, White
level, or Gamma settings have been adjusted, the new values are saved but the pixel
values are not altered. When this file is opened at a later time, AlphaEaseFC will display
it with the values that were displayed when the image was saved, however, it is still
possible to revert to the original raw image file by selecting Reset on the Tool Bar .
Annotation information cannot be saved with the Original image option. (It can,
however, be saved as an Overlay. See section 3.5 for more information.)
If the image was saved as an original file using an older Alpha Innotech system, some
distortion may occur when viewing it in desktop publishing or word processing
programs. If this occurs, save a copy of the image in the Modified format before
importing it into another software package.
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An image that is saved as a Modified file permanently retains the changes to the image's
Black level, White level, and Gamma setting. Annotations and any filtering performed
are also saved with the image, replacing original image information with the new
information.
Note: If the image is saved as a Modified file it is converted to an 8-bit image.
Print Setup
This function displays a dialog box in which the settings for the parallel printer are
specified. When all the pertinent printing preferences have been specified, click on the
OK button. If you purchased a printer with AlphaEaseFC, this will be preset from the
factory.
Printer Setup Dialog Box
Printer…. Dialog Box
For more information on using the Print menu, see the Windows manual.
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Print
This function sends the image to the default printer specified in Print Setup.
Logoff
This function logs the current user out of AlphaEaseFC when security features are in use.
For more information on security features, see Section 3.3.
The Exit Function
The Exit function closes AlphaEaseFC.
To restart AlphaEaseFC from Windows, double-click on the AlphaEaseFC icon.
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3.2 The Edit Menu
The Edit menu provides the ability to copy, crop and remove any annotations or filters
that have been added to the original image.
Edit Pull down menu
To activate the Copy and Crop functionality, place a check mark next to EDIT
ACTIVATION. This will turn the mouse cursor into a + sign that will allow you to
highlight the region of interest for the image. After Edit Activation is highlighted, the
desired area of interest is drawn using the mouse.
Ready to Crop or Copy
Once this is completed, you can select either the COPY or CROP function in the EDIT
menu options. COPY will copy the desired area of interest into the Windows Clipboard
and allow you to paste into any desktop publishing package (ie. Word, Excel, Adobe
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Photoshop, etc.). CROP will display just the region of interest as the active window in
the AlphaEaseFC interface.
AlphaEaseFC interface after CROP has been selected
Reset and Clear
The Reset option configures the Black, White, and Gamma settings to default settings.
Clear removes any annotations that are present on the image.
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3.3 The Image Menu
The Image menu option provides the ability to perform a variety of image processing
functions.
Image Pull down menu
Equalize
The equalize option performs a duplicate function to the EQUAL option in the Contrast
Adjustment Window. This is a useful function for detecting faint bands on a sample.
Arithmetic
The Arithmetic function is used to add, subtract, average and divide several images
together to generate a compiled image.
Image Arithmetic dialog box
To average a set of images together open one of the images in the set and then select
‘Average a Set…’ under the Image pull down menu. A prompt will appear allowing
the user to select all of the images that for the set. It is possible to browse the directories
looking on the network drives and removable media if necessary. Once all of the images
have been selected click on the open button to finish the set. The resulting image is an
average of all of the images together. This is a useful function for extending the dynamic
range on a set of similar images by allowing bright spots and faint spots to be seen on the
same image.
The other functions are adding, subtracting and dividing images together. Adding
together images is frequently used for colorimetric markers run together with
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chemiluminescent samples. Subtracting images is often used to remove noise from a
sample by running dark images first and subtracting them out of the final image. The
most common application for quotient is for those technical users who run their own flat
field corrections. This can be done using the Flat Field Calibrate selection under the
Image pull down menu which will be described in detail later in this section.
All three of these arithmetic functions are performed by opening the main image that will
be adjusted. Next select the appropriate arithmetic function under the image pull down
menu. Then select the image that is to be added, subtracted or divided from the original
image and select open. The dialog box will disappear and the resultant image will
appear.
Note: Images that have been arithmetically altered are ideal for publications and
documentation, however, they are strongly not recommended for analysis as the
pixel values have been adjusted.
Conversion
Since AlphaEaseFC can generate 16-bit files, the conversion option is useful when an
image is to be imported into a program that only accepts 8-bit images. Choosing this
option will convert a 16-bit image into an 8-bit image.
Image Conversion dialog box
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Flat Field Calibrate
Flat Field Calibrate is a function that is used to ‘flatten’ the image so that the pixel data
is even across the entire image area. This is a function that is useful for large gels and
other applications that use the entire field of view for an image.
Creating flats can be art in itself; there are many documents on the internet that can help
users interested in this arena to create the ideal flat for the application. However, some
useful flats that have been created in the past involve very simple tools like a piece of 8.5
x 11 regular low quality copy paper (higher quality paper contains watermarks that will
show up in the final image). It is essential that both the flat and the gel images be
identical, including the aperture, zoom (if applicable) and focus settings on the lens.
Step-by-Step Flat Field Calibration:
1) Place the gel or other application in the cabinet or dark room.
2) Adjust the aperture, zoom (if applicable) and focus on the lens.
3) Use auto-expose set to the normal selection and acquire an image of the gel.
(Alternatively, it is possible to select show saturation and then use expose
preview and adjust the exposure time manually to just under saturation.)
4) Save the image of the gel.
5) Next remove the gel from the UV transilluminator or white light tray and clean
and/or dry off the surface if necessary using glass cleaner.
6) Place the white piece of paper onto the appropriate surface. (For example, if
the UV transilluminator was used, place the paper onto the UV
transilluminator; if the white light tray was used, place the piece of paper onto
the white light tray.)
7) Turn on the appropriate light source used (white light, UV transilluminator, epi
lights, etc.).
8) Without changing anything on the lens acquire another image of the ‘Flat’
image following step #3 again.
9) Save the Flat image.
10) Open the original gel or other application image.
11) Select Flat Field Calibrate from the Image pull down menu.
12) Browse the directories for the ‘Flat’ image created.
13) Click on open. Make sure to save the flat field calibrated image for future use.
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Image Resize
The image resize function is to resize an image to a specific dimension for use in
graphical presentations. You have the option to ‘Preserve aspect ratio’ to avoid image
dimensional distortion, or you can deactivate this function and configure the image
resolution to the desired Width and Height dimensions.
Image Resize dialog box
Note: It is recommended that you DO NOT perform quantitative analysis on
resized images.
Image Info
The Image Info function provides a dialog box with all detailed image properties. To
remove this dialog box from the screen, click on the OK button.
Image Info dialog box
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3.4 The Setup Menu
This menu customizes the system settings by allowing users to save default parameter
preferences and customize the software settings.
Setup pull down menu
Default Parameters
Default parameter files eliminate the need to readjust the system settings each time the
program is used, and can be especially useful if more than one person works with the
program.
The default file used by AlphaEaseFC when it initially loads is called INNOTECH.DEF.
The system setting defaults are:
Exposure Time:
Black Level:
White Level:
Gamma Setting:
REVERSE:
ARRAY:
1D MULTI:
8/milli sec
0
up to 255, 4095, or 65,535 - depending on the system type
0.55
off
96 circles (12 x 8)
8 lanes
While these parameters can be changed, we do not recommend changing
INNOTECH.DEF. Instead, we recommend that each user set up an individual default
file(s) reflecting their preferences.
Save Defaults
Every time a default file is saved, all of the settings for the parameters listed above are
saved. These can be loaded later and applied to any image.
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Save Defaults Dialog Box
Once any of the system settings have been changed, a new default file can be created. To
save a default file, enter a file name by typing in the text box below the File Name
prompt. If it is necessary to change the directory or drive to which the file will be saved,
select a different directory under the Save In pull down menu. AlphaEaseFC will
automatically add the appropriate 3-character extension.
Click on the SAVE button. The Save As dialog box disappears and a new file is created.
To exit this function without loading a default file, click on the CANCEL button.
Load Defaults
This function retrieves system default settings from a saved file.
To open a default file, enter the name of the file by typing its name in the text box below
the File Name prompt. If it is necessary to change the directory or drive to which the
file will be saved, select a different directory under the Save In pull down menu.
Once the file has been selected, click on the OK button to load the file. The Load
Defaults dialog box disappears and the image controls are adjusted to reflect the settings
in the file loaded.
To exit this function without loading a default file, click on the CANCEL button.
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Security
When the system is shared by a number of people or laboratories, a method of keeping
track of its use may be helpful. The Security feature allows various levels of security
and user log functions.
We suggest one user be designated as the supervisor of the system. This individual
should refer to Appendix C, which describes the security features in detail.
Note: It is strongly recommend that you remove Appendix C from the manual to
avoid unauthorized users changing the password and the security settings.
Print Info
Setup Print Image Info Dialog Box
When printing an image, basic image information is included on the print. This includes
the exposure time, the Black level, White level, and Gamma setting, the date and time
the image file was generated, an image ID number, and the name of the file to which the
image is stored.
To print this information at the top of the print, choose Top from this menu. To print at
the bottom of the print, choose Bottom.
Note: Printing image information at the top or bottom of a print may obscure a
small portion of the image. To print the image with no information on it, choose Off.
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Print Mode
AlphaEaseFC software provides custom printing options. Printing can be achieved in
three different methods.
Setup Print Image Info Dialog Box
Full Image:
Prints the original image. Does not print zoomed images or images
overlaid with data screens.
Screen Dump:
Prints the imaging area. Well suited for printing images overlaid
with data screens and/or graphs, zoomed images, etc.
Image Window:
Prints the highlighted window.
Print Date
Under the “Setup” menu there is a selection labeled “Print Info”. This allows the user to
change the format in which the date is printed. The choices are MM/DD/YYYY and
DD/MM/YYYY.
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Preferences
In order to change the preferences of the system, you will need to find the administrator
of the AlphaEaseFC software program to log in. If you do not have an administrator of
the AlphaEaseFC software program, see Appendix C in this manual.
Login Dialog box for Preferences
There are four tabs in the Preferences menu (AlphaEaseFC Stand Alone software does
not contain the Image Acquire or Cabinet Settings tabs):
1) General – Configure prompts and file saving/opening formats.
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2) Image Acquire – Inverts the image seen by the camera and adjusts the ROI
values (For the FluorChem 5500 only).
Caution: We do not recommend that you make any changes to these settings
without contacting technical support first. Some features on this tab are not
currently implemented in the software.
3) Cabinet Settings – Used for adjusting the port settings and customizing filter
positions on the cabinet.
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4) Auto Enhancements – Used to customize the Auto Enhance Levels located
in the Image Enhancement tool box.
To make changes to the preferences, select your change by typing in a new value or
select/de-select the appropriate box with a check mark and then select apply. Some
settings may require that the software be re-started for the change to take effect.
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3.5 The Overlay Menu
The Overlay menu provides a means of saving and retrieving annotation overlays. This
is especially useful when a standard gel format is run repeatedly. Lane numbers,
molecular weight marker sizes, and other pertinent information can be stored as an
Overlay file and retrieved at a later date. This eliminates the need to re-enter the
information each time a new image is captured.
Overlay pull down menu
An overlay is any set of annotations (text, boxes, arrows, etc.) that have been drawn on
the image. They can be saved as a group and opened later. If repetitive samples are
being imaged, an overlay eliminates the need to re-enter the same information (such as
lane numbers, standard sizes, etc.) continually.
Saving an Overlay
Once annotations have been made, select Save Overlay from the Overlay menu.
Save Overlay Dialog Box
Enter a new file name in the text box below the File Name prompt. AlphaEaseFC will
automatically give the appropriate 3-character extension.
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The current directory is the one in which the new overlay file will be saved.
necessary, change the directory or drive as described in Section 3.1.
If
Once a name has been entered and the appropriate directory has been accessed, click the
SAVE button to save the overlay file.
Loading an Overlay
The Load Overlay function allows Overlay files to be retrieved and applied to the image
currently displayed.
Opening an Overlay after an image has been captured places the annotations on top of
the image. They can be stored as part of the image by saving the file as a modified file.
(See Save Image As in Section 3.1 for instructions.)
Select the name of the file to be loaded. (If necessary, change the directory or drive.) The
file name is then highlighted in the list and appears in the text box below the Filename
prompt.
Once the file has been selected, click on the OK button to load the file. (Alternatively,
double-click on the file name.) The dialog box disappears and the annotations in the
selected file appear on the image.
To dismiss the dialog box without loading annotations, click on the CANCEL button.
Overlay Libraries
AlphaEaseFC contains a library of overlays that can be accessed through the Load
Overlay function described above. This library of overlays is stored in the Image folder
located in the AlphaEaseFC directory:
08WHITE.OVR / 08BLACK.OVR
10WHITE.OVR / 10BLACK.OVR
12WHITE.OVR / 12BLACK.OVR
15WHITE.OVR / 15BLACK.OVR
24WHITE.OVR / 24BLACK.OVR
HINDIII.OVR
8 lane labels in white/black
10 lane labels in white/black
12 lane labels in white/black
15 lane labels in white/black
24 lane labels in white/black
λHindIII label
The objects in these overlays can be repositioned, resized, re-colored, copied or deleted
as needed.
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Loading/Saving Spot Denso Overlays
When the Spot Denso function in the Analysis Tools is being used, the overlay menu
will contain two additional functions to load and save Spot Denso overlays:
Overlay Menu for Spot Denso Analysis Tools
Spot Denso Overlays work the same as the annotative overlays described above except
that they have a different 3-character extension:
Overlays
= .ovr
Spot denso overlays = .spo
When Spot Denso Overlays are loaded, they will automatically bring up the data
contained within the boxes (see section 5.5 for more details).
Note: Overlays are specific to the resolution of the image that they were created on.
Therefore, if an overlay was created on an image with a different resolution than the
image that the overlay is being loaded onto, the overlay may not match the original
image.
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3.6 The Utilities Menu
A number of functions are now handled by Windows programs. To access many of these
programs while in AlphaEaseFC, open the Utilities menu and select the program of
choice.
Utilities pull down menu
Explorer
Windows Explorer allows access to files and other information saved on the local
machine or the network, if applicable.
Windows Explorer Dialog Box
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Notepad
The Notepad is a blank screen that allows the user to make notes about the experiment
and save them as an ASCII file. The Notepad is useful for saving any imaging comments
or experimental conditions with the saved image for future reference.
Notepad Display Window
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3.7 The View Menu
The View function provides the ability to control the display of the on-screen control
tools as well as provide image enhancement abilities.
View pull down menu
Four (4) main control windows exist within AlphaEaseFC: Contrast Adjustment, Tool
Bar, Status Bar, and ToolBox:
Tool Bar Window
Contrast Adjustment Window
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Status Bar
ToolBox Window
These control windows automatically open when AlphaEaseFC is launched for additional
ease of use and to generate a common ‘look and feel’. However, if you would like to
remove any of these windows they can be turned off in the View menu by just
deactivating the check mark next to the item that you would like to remove from the
screen. Also, since these items are ‘floating’ tools, you can click on Default Tools
Position to move all tools to the default locations for more intuitive operation. Lastly,
except for the status bar, it is possible to select and move any of the other windows to a
custom location.
Zoom Functions
Additional options provide the ability to Zoom In and Zoom Out on the image, Zoom to
1X and to Fit to Screen.
Note: Zoom In and Zoom Out are duplicate functions for the Zoom In and Zoom
Out icons in the ToolBar and the Zoom options in the Enhancement Tools.
Show Annotations
There is also an option to display/not display the annotations. To display the annotations,
place a check mark next to the ‘Show Annotations’ option in the View menu. Otherwise,
remove the check mark to remove the annotations from the image viewing area (the
annotations are not deleted by selecting this option).
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3.8 The Help Menu
Help pull down menu
On-Line Note
On-line help is available in the ON-LINE NOTE section of the help menu. Common
tips are included for both Enhancement Tools and Analysis Tools detailed in Chapters 4
and 5 respectively.
About
To display system information, select the About option in the Help menu. This button
accesses a pop-up box. This box shows the system serial number and software version
number. Use this information when contacting Alpha Innotech for technical support,
software upgrades, etc.
AlphaEaseFC About Help Dialog Box
To close the box, click on the OK button.
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Chapter 4: Enhancement Tools
Chapter 4: The Image
Enhancement Tools in the Toolbox
Image enhancement tools are contained within the Tool Box as indicated. This tool set
allows the user to zoom the image, rotate-flip the image, show the image histogram,
perform automatic image enhancement, annotate on the image, display false colors, apply
software filters, and activate the Movie function.
4.1 The Zoom Tool
The Zoom Tools
The Zoom tool is found in Tool Box, Enhancement Tools
This function magnifies an image, making details easier to see, and allows movement
around the magnified image.
An image can be displayed ¼x, ½s, 1x, 2x, 4x, or 8x larger than the original display by
clicking on the appropriate buttons. To return to the original magnification, click on the
1X button.
When an image is magnified, only part of it can be displayed on the screen at any one
time. To see different parts of the magnified image, use the green Pan Control box. The
outer box shows a thumbnail of the entire image while the inner green box represents the
portion currently displayed on the screen.
To view different regions of a magnified image, move the cursor into the inner box. Click
and hold down the left mouse button. The cursor changes to a hand; use it to drag the
green box until the desired region of the image appears on the screen.
Alternatively, use the scroll bars in the image window to move the image up/down, and
left/right.
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On-screen Zoom tools is also available located on the main ToolBar Window in. This
function duplicates the Zoom tool in Tool Box, and also allows for Image Drag to
easily pan the image during any analysis functions located in Tool Box Analysis Tools.
Zoom icons in ToolBar
Image Drag Icon in ToolBar
4.2 The Rotate / Flip Tool
The Rotate / Flip Tool
The Rotate / Flip tool is found in Tool Box, Enhancement Tools. This function
rotates the image in a clockwise or counterclockwise direction by 1 degree increments up
to a maximum of 90 degrees in either direction. This is a useful tool if the image is not
aligned properly during the capturing process.
To rotate an image, click and hold down on the center sliding bar with the left mouse
button and move it left or right until the desired angle of rotation appears in the rotate
box. Release the left mouse button and image will rotate to the desired angle. To undo a
rotation, just click on the Undo_R button. Also, a Flip option allows for the image to be
rotated 180 degrees in a vertical or horizontal fashion.
The Reset button on the main software interface will also remove any rotations or image
flips and return to the display to the original image
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Rotated 11 degrees clockwise
Rotate / Flip box at 11 degrees
Rotated -11 degrees
(Counterclockwise)
Rotate / Flip box at –11 degrees
Image rotated 11 degrees
and flipped vertically
Rotate / Flip box at –11
degree and vertical
Flip button pressed
4.3 Histogram
The histogram is a graphical display of the proportion of pixels assigned to each of the
4,095 gray levels. This tool is found in Tool Box, Enhancement Tools.
Histogram display in the Tool Box
The image is made up of picture elements (pixels) having brightness levels ranging from
black to white. A very bright image will have most of its pixels registering high gray
levels and conversely, a very dark image will have most pixels with low gray levels
(approaching zero).
The histogram is displayed in the lower left corner of the screen, below the image
window. The horizontal axis represents the gray scale range: black at the left end and
white at the right end, with levels of gray in between. The number of pixels registering a
particular gray level determines the height of each bar along the axis.
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A Coomassie blue-stained protein gel visualized with a white light box has a histogram
reflecting mostly bright pixels:
Histogram of a typical Coomassie gel
Most of the pixels are found in the light portion of this histogram. The dark bands
represent a small number of pixels and include a variety of gray values, and therefore do
not show up as a single peak.
The histogram function is particularly useful to verify that an image spans the maximum
range of gray levels. When an image is to be used for analysis, it is especially important
that the gray level range be as large as possible. If an image does not include most of the
gray levels, we recommend repeating the image capturing process.
4.4 Automatic Enhancement
The Enhance Tools
The Enhance tool is found in Tool Box, Enhancement Tools. This function is ideal
for new or inexperienced users of the system since it offers 9 levels of automatic image
enhancement of the black, white, and gamma levels simultaneously. For an
inexperienced user, in can be difficult to adjust each black, white, and gamma buttons to
their respective optimal positions. By clicking on one of the nine Auto Enhance Level
buttons, the image is optimized according to a unique level. Button 1 will make the
image ‘darker’. Each increasing button click will ‘lighten’ up the image until button 9 is
pressed which will make the image the ‘lightest’ possible.
To undo any Auto Enhance Levels, just press on the Reset button on the main
interface.
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Original Image
Auto Enhance Level 2 Image
Original Auto Enhance Toolbox Auto Enhance Toolbox with level 2
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Auto Enhance Toolbox with level 9
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4.5 Annotations
The annotation tools, found in ToolBox, Enhancement Tools, include a number of
different options for adding text (including Greek symbols), drawing arrows and
otherwise marking an image. Note that these tools are for annotation only. For
information on drawing objects for quantitation purposes, see Chapter 5.
Annotations Toolbox
Object Attributes
Use the COLOR, PEN WIDTH, PEN STYLE, LINE ENDS, TEXT STYLE and/or
TEXT ORIENT menus to specify object attributes. Attributes can be assigned to the
cursor before drawing or typing. Alternatively, they can be assigned to an object while it
is in “edit” mode (see the following pages for more details).
Annotation Colors
Annotations can be displayed in a variety of colors. The color options are displayed by
clicking the COLOR checkbox. To select a color, simply click the cursor on the button
labeled with the desired color. The color button appears depressed, indicating that it is
selected. Any annotations subsequently entered will appear in that color. It should be
noted, however, that annotations are printed in gray scale on the video printer. Further,
when an image is saved as a modified image, the annotations are saved in gray-scale, not
color.
Pen Color Selection Tools
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Line Thickness
The PEN WIDTH menu specifies the thickness of lines when using the freehand, lines,
box and circle drawing tools. Click on the appropriate checkbox for the desired width.
All annotations subsequently entered will appear at that width.
Pen Width Selection Tools
Line Types
The PEN STYLE menu specifies the style of lines when using the freehand, lines, box
and circle drawing tools. Click on the appropriate checkbox for the desired style. All
annotations subsequently entered will appear in that style. Note: these pen styles only
work with a thin line (see Line Thickness above).
Pen Style Selection Tools
Arrows and Straight Lines
The LINE ENDS menu specifies the style of the ends of straight lines (no arrow, single
arrow or double arrow). Click on the appropriate checkbox for the desired style. Note:
these line ends work with any line thickness.
Line Ends Selection Tools
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Text Background and Font
The TEXT STYLE menu specifies the style of text. Click on the appropriate checkbox to
show text with or without a background. An opaque background is useful if annotations
will be made on an image that has wide variations in gray scale. By using an opaque
background, text will not be “lost” in the background of the image.
Text Style Selection Tools
This is also the window in which specific font is chosen. When the Set Font button is
depressed, a selection box appears, from which text style can be chosen.
Font Selection Window
Note:
To choose Greek symbols (such as α, β, λ, π, and θ) choose the Symbol font:
a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z
α β χ δ ε φ γ η ι ϕ κ λ µ ν ο π θ ρ σ τ υ ϖ ω ξ ψ ζ
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Text Angles
In the TEXT ORIENT window, select whether text should be oriented vertically,
horizontally, or at an angle (in 15° increments).
Text Orient Selection Tools
Note: only rotate fonts that are True Type (indicated by TT in front of the name); other
fonts (such as Courier and Fixedsys) do not re-scale properly, giving unpredictable
results.
The Drawing Tools
Once the object attributes have been defined, click the cursor on any of the drawing tool
buttons to assign the function associated with that button to the mouse. The cursor will
change from an arrow to a cross, indicating that AlphaEase™ is in “drawing” mode.
After selecting a drawing tool, move the cursor to the correct position on the image to
begin drawing. Press and hold the left mouse button and move the mouse to the end
point of the object to be drawn. Release the left button, and the object should now
appear.
Boxes will appear at the corners of the new object and the cursor will revert to an arrow,
indicating that AlphaEase™ is now in “edit” mode. At this point, the object can be
resized or repositioned. The color, pen thickness, line type, etc. can also be changed,
simply by clicking on the desired choice (as described in Object Attributes above).
To draw another object, click the right mouse button to return to “draw” mode, or
click on one of the drawing tool buttons.
The button labeled with an "A" adds text to the image. Place the cursor at the
location on the image where the left edge of the text should appear. Click the left mouse
button and begin typing. To place another piece of text, click where it should be placed.
Once all text is entered, click on the right mouse button. To edit text, double-click on it.
An edit window will appear, in which changes can be made. To change fonts, see Text
Background and Font above.
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The button labeled with a pencil icon allows the user to draw lines freehand. After
clicking on the pencil, move the cursor to the correct position on the image to begin
drawing. Press and hold the left mouse button. Using the mouse, move the cursor as if it
were a pencil. When finished drawing, release the mouse button.
The button labeled with a diagonal line and arrow draws arrows and straight
lines. After clicking on the button, move the cursor to the position on the image where the
line should begin. Press and hold the left mouse button. Using the mouse, move the
cursor to the other end point of the line then release the mouse button. The arrow can be
adjusted by clicking on one of the boxes at the end (the other will serve as an anchor
point) or by clicking in the middle to drag the entire arrow.
The button labeled with a angles arrows on its side is a line drawing tool, very
similar to the one described above. The significant difference is that this tool limits the
angle that the line can be drawn to increments of 45°.
The button labeled with a square draws a rectangle or square of any size on the
image. After clicking on the button, move the cursor to the position that should
correspond to one of the corners of the rectangle. Press and hold the left mouse button.
Using the mouse, move the cursor to enlarge the rectangle. When it reaches the desired
size, release the left mouse button.
The button labeled with a circle draws a circle of any size. After clicking on the
button, move the cursor to the position on the image where the circle should be started.
Press and hold the left mouse button. Using the mouse, move the cursor to enlarge the
circle. When the circle reaches the desired size, release the left mouse button.
Hint: to draw a perfect circle around a portion of an image, first visualize a square
surrounding the area of interest. Position the mouse in the upper left hand corner of the
square. Click and drag the mouse down across the area of interest at a 45° angle until the
circle encloses the area of interest.
Sample Annotations
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Annotated image showing: freehand drawings, lines with various
characteristics, circles, squares, text with various characteristics
The Editing Tools
When the cursor is in “edit” mode, it can be clicked on an object to select it. (Note: the
cursor can be toggled between “edit” and “drawing” modes by clicking the right mouse
button.)
When an object is selected, small square boxes appear at the corners. Selected objects
can be resized, copied, deleted or moved:
• To resize an object, click on one of the gray boxes at the corners of its perimeter and
drag the box until the object reaches the desired size.
• To copy an object, use the Copy tool.
• To delete an object, use the Cut tool or the Eraser.
• To move an object, click within its boundary and drag it into the desired location.
To select more than one object, outline them with the mouse; any objects that fall
completely within the outline drawn will be selected. (Note: The entire object must be
enclosed by the cursor’s movement in order to be selected.)
A Selected Object
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Once an object or group of objects has been selected, clicking on the Cut tool
deletes it from the image.
The Copy tool makes an exact copy of the selected object. The new object
becomes the selected object, and can be repositioned by placing the cursor within the
object’s boundary and moving it to the desired location.
The Horizontal Alignment tool aligns annotations in a straight horizontal line.
This is especially useful for labeling lanes, etc. To use this tool, draw text on the image,
select it, click the Horizontal Alignment tool, then deselect the text. The text will now
be aligned in a straight line across the image.
Text Prior to Horizontal Alignment
Text After Horizontal Alignment
The Vertical Alignment tool aligns annotations in a straight vertical line. This is
especially useful for labeling markers, etc. To use this tool, draw text on the image,
select it, click the Vertical Alignment tool, then deselect the text. The text will now be
aligned in a straight line down the image.
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4.6 False Color
These tools consist of eleven pre-defined color palettes that can be applied to an image.
To select a palette, simply click on one of the four buttons labeled GRAY PALETTE,
SATURATION, NEXT or PREVIOUS.
False Color Selection Box
When a palette is selected, its range of colors is displayed to the left of the palette buttons
and automatically applied to the image. To apply a different palette to the image, click
the NEXT or PREVIOUS buttons.
Note: changes in Black level, White level and Gamma setting can alter the effect of
each of the palettes, and can enhance the results produced.
Gray Scale (Palette 0)
This is the default or standard gray scale, consisting of different gray levels, ranging from
black to white.
Saturation (Palette 1)
This is a modified gray scale palette in which black is replaced with green, and white is
replaced with red. Over- and under-exposed areas of the image are thus shown as green
or red, while areas within the linear range of the CCD chip are shown in gray scale. The
Saturation Palette is especially useful during quantitation, as areas outside the linear
range of the instrument do not give accurate quantitative information. This palette allows
the user to avoid those areas during quantitative analysis.
This palette can also be accessed by clicking the Show Saturation checkbox in the
Camera Setup and Preview function (accessible by clicking on the Camera icon in the
ToolBar window)
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Palettes 2 through 11
These are color substitution palettes in which the gray levels are translated into different
color ranges. These palettes can be useful to help distinguish features and highlight
details on an image.
Palette 2 maps the gray scale levels to a red/green/blue palette. Values of 0 are mapped
to red; saturated to blue, and values in between to green.
Palette 3 maps the gray scale levels to a red/green/blue palette. Values of 0 are mapped
to blue; saturated to green, and values in between to red.
Palette 4 maps the gray scale levels to a red/green/blue palette. Values of 0 are mapped
to green; saturated to red, and values in between to blue.
Palette 5 maps the gray scale levels to a cyan/magenta/yellow palette. Values of 0 are
mapped to cyan; saturated to yellow, and values in between to magenta.
Palette 6 maps the gray scale levels to a cyan/magenta/yellow palette. Values of 0 are
mapped to yellow; saturated to magenta, and values in between to cyan.
Palette 7 maps the gray scale levels to a cyan/magenta/yellow palette. Values of 0 are
mapped to magenta; saturated to cyan, and values in between to yellow.
Palette 8 maps the gray scale levels to a red palette. Values of 0 are mapped to dark red;
saturated to white, and values in between to shades of red.
Palette 9 maps the gray scale levels to a blue palette. Values of 0 are mapped to dark
blue; saturated to white, and values in between to shades of blue. This palette may be
useful when printing an image of a Coomassie-stained protein gel onto a color printer.
Palette 10 maps the gray scale levels to a green palette. Values of 0 are mapped to dark
green; saturated to white, and values in between to shades of green. This palette may be
useful when printing an image of a SYBR® Green I-stained protein gel onto a color
printer.
Palette 11 maps the gray scale levels to an orange palette. Values of 0 are mapped to
dark orange; saturated to white, and values in between to shades of orange. This palette
may be useful when printing an image of an EtBr-stained gel onto a color printer.
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4.7 Image Filters
Filters Toolbox with 3-D (contour) selected
AlphaEaseFC™ includes a variety of enhancement filters that can improve the
appearance of an image. Some filters sharpen detail, others smooth and reduce random
noise. Still others help visualize edges and separate closely spaced bands or objects.
Depending upon the unique characteristics of an image, the results of each filtering
operation vary. Assess the characteristics of the image and then select the filter designed
to minimize its imperfections.
When an image is filtered, the original image information is replaced with the results of
the filtering operation. As a result, the original image information is altered. To avoid
losing the original image, save it as an original TIFF file before applying a filter.
When the FILTERS button in ToolBox, Enhancement Tools is selected, a pop-up box
appears. If the desired filter is not shown, choose MORE to display more filters. One or
many filters can be applied to a single image.
The Filters Toolbox with Sharpen highlighted
The Filters Toolbox with More selected
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General Information on How Filters Work
To enhance an image, filters change the value assigned to each pixel. The new value
assigned to a pixel is determined based on the values of the other pixels in its local
vicinity (or “neighborhood”). The neighborhood is a two-dimensional matrix of pixel
values, where each dimension has an odd number of elements. The "pixel of interest" is
the one at the center of the neighborhood. This is the pixel whose old value is being
replaced with a new one as the result of the filtering algorithm.
The pixels in a neighborhood provide information about the brightness trend. This
information is important to the filtering process. The brightness trend is also referred to
as the "spatial frequency." Images with high spatial frequency content contain large,
closely spaced changes in pixel values. For example, on a black and white checkerboard,
the smaller the squares, the higher the frequency content.
Images with low spatial frequency content (for example, images of clouds) contain large
areas of slowly changing pixel values.
Most of the filter options available (with the exception of the Noise filters) use a
weighted summation process to determine the value assigned to the pixel of interest. Each
pixel in a 3x3 neighborhood is multiplied by a "convolution kernel" having the same
dimensions. The resulting sum is assigned to the pixel of interest.
(K1xP1)+
(K2xP2)+
(K3xP3)+
(K4xP4)+
P1 P2 P3
K1 K2 K3
(K5xP5)+
P4 P5 P6
X
K4 K5 K6
(K6xP6)+
P7 P8 P9
K7 K8 K9
(K7xP7)+
(K8xP8)+
3x3 pixel neighborhoodconvolution kernel
(K9xP9)
(P5 is being calculated)
New Value for P5
Each element of the convolution kernel is a weighting factor, also called a "convolution
coefficient." The size and arrangement of these weighting factors determine the type of
transformation the image will undergo. Changing a weighting factor influences the
overall sum and, therefore, affects the value given to the pixel of interest.
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Sharpening Filters
These filters can increase image sharpness and provide edge enhancement. However
image noise may be enhanced as well. These filters accentuate the high-frequency details
of an image while leaving the low-frequency content intact. High frequency portions of
the image get brighter while low frequency portions become black.
Sharpen level 9 (high) has the largest effect on the image. Sharpen level 5 has an
intermediate effect. Sharpen 1 (low) has the most subtle effect on the image. 9 different
sharpening levels are available for optimization of the image.
3-D (Contour) Filters
These filters are particularly useful for visualizing faint bands. They produce a "3-D"
effect, defining edges and making details easier to see.
3-D level 9 (high) has the largest effect on the image. 3-D level 5 has an intermediate
effect 3-D level 1 (low) has the least effect on the image. 9 different 3-D levels are
available for optimization of the image.
In addition, 3-D allows the user to control the ‘direction’ of the 3-D shadowing effect.
Once the level is refined, just click on a direction arrow to visualize the shadowing
adjustment. The default shadow direction is in the lower right hand corner direction and
9 different directions are available.
Original Image
Original Filter Toolbox
3-D Image Level 5 &
lower right shadow
Lower right shadow
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Noise Filters
These filters are particularly effective in eliminating random noise contained in an image
and produce less blurring than the smoothing filter described below. This filtering
process uses the values of the pixels contained in the area surrounding a pixel to
determine the new value given to the pixel of interest. The noise filter sorts the pixels in
the neighborhood into ascending order and picks the middle or median pixel value as the
new value for the pixel of interest. 3 levels of noise reduction are available
Smoothing Filters
These filters are very useful for reducing the visual noise present in an image. When a
smoothing filter is applied to an image, rapid changes in intensity are averaged out with
the remaining pixels in the neighborhood, thereby decreasing the high frequency content.
The visual result is a slight smoothing of the image because sharp pixel transitions are
averaged with their surroundings.
Smooth High has the largest effect on the image. Smooth Med has an intermediate
effect. Smooth Low has the most subtle effect on the image.
Edge Filters
These filters use Laplacian enhancement to highlight edges, regardless of direction. All
edge-enhancement operations attenuate the low frequencies of the image. Regions of
constant intensity or linearly increasing intensity become black as a result of these
transformations, and regions of rapidly changing intensity values are highlighted.
Note: The White level may need to be adjusted after using the Edge filters in order
to see the result of this filtering process.
Horizontal Edge Filter
This filter brightens horizontal edges. This can be useful in pinpointing bands on a gel.
The horizontal edge filter (Horz. Edge) enhances image edges by shifting an image
vertically by one pixel and then subtracting the shifted image from the original. In an
area of constant pixel intensity, the subtraction yields black pixel values. At an edge,
which is an area with large changes in intensity, the subtraction yields light-colored pixel
values. The larger the difference in intensities, the lighter the resultant pixels.
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Note: After applying the horizontal edge filter the entire image may appear
black, and might require reducing the White level in order to better visualize the
results.
Vertical Edge Filter
This filter (Vert. Edge) brightens vertical edges using the approach described for the
horizontal edge filter (see above), except that the image is shifted horizontally before the
shifted image is subtracted from the original. In this case, the vertical edges produce
light-colored pixel values. As in the horizontal edge filter, it may be necessary to adjust
the White level in order to better visualize the results of this filtering process.
Custom Filter
This function also allows the user to customize filters to his/her own specifications.
Using the weighting factors of the other filters as a frame of reference, experiment with
new weighting factor values.
The UNDO Button
The upper right button is labeled UNDO. This reverses the last filtering process applied
to an image. To revert the image to its original state after multiple filters have been
applied, press the RESET button on the main interface.
Examples of Filter Results
Original Image
Noise Level 3 (High) Sharpen Level 9 (High)
SmoothHigh
EdgeHigh
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Horizontal Edge
Vertical Edge
4.8 Movie Mode
If kinetic, multiplex, color, or chemiluminescence experiments are desired where you
wish to have the system automatically capture several images at preset exposure times,
preset time delay between images, preset lighting sources, and preset filter choices, the
MOVIE box can be clicked in ToolBox, Enhancement Tools. (Movie Setup is also
accessible in camera setup acquisition screen. To access this screen select the acquire
button on the tool bar and then select ‘Movie Setup’ on the acquisition screen.
AlphaEaseFC stand alone software does not include Movie acquisition tools)
‘Movie Setup’ in the
camera setup acquisition
screen
Movie Mode Setup in the Tool Box Enhancement Tools
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Once MOVIE SETUP is selected, a display box will appear for independent control of
all lighting, filters, and exposure delay for each image frame.
The TOTAL FRAMES setup provides you with the
ability to determine how many individual frames
(images) you want for the movie. There is a
maximum of 50 frames (images) and a minimum of 1
frame that can be captured with each movie.
The FRAME selection is used for setting up the
conditions for each frame (image). For example, if
three (3) images are to be captured, you would choose
FRAME 1 and setup all of the desired lighting and
filter requirements. You can then click on FRAME 2
and repeat the above. Or, you can click on COPY
TO NEXT to help speed up the setup process.
COPY TO NEXT copies all settings from the
previous frame to the current frame. Usually, for
chemiluminescence imaging, all lighting is off and
the filter wheel is positioned for the
chemiluminescence position for all frames. Thus, the
only variable that is changing from one frame to the
next is the exposure time. In this situation, COPY TO NEXT is a useful tool to save
time in the setup process.
If you are performing kinetic experiments where you want to have a predetermined delay
between captured images, then you can use EXP DELAY to configure this function. The
default EXP DELAY is set for the shortest possible delay (19 milliseconds), but can be
configured up to 50 minutes between each image. Also, if your exposure delay and/or
exposure time and/or lighting options/filter position is consistent for the entire movie,
then once you setup the first frame, you can select the COPY TO END selection to
automatically choose the first frame settings for the entire movie of frames (images).
Once the movie is setup to the desired configuration, click on the GO button. The movie
will then begin the image acquisition for each frame of the image. When it is complete,
the movie setup box will disappear and the TOOLBOX window will automatically
configure to the MOVIE tools. This will allow you to playback the movie, save or load
the movie, or record a new movie.
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Once all images have been captured, the above Movie display box will become
displayed. The remaining buttons will perform the following tasks:
REC
PLAY
STOP
PAUSE
REW (rewind)
REV (reverse)
FWD (forward)
DEL (delete)
LOAD
SAVE
Move to Camera Setup and Preview, Movie Record setup
functions to record a movie.
Display a continuous loop ‘movie’ of all of the captured images.
Stop the movie at the current frame display
Pause the playback of the movie at a user defined image
Rewind the movie to the first image
Play the movie in a continuous loop in reverse
Forward the movie to the last image
Delete the movie on the display. THIS FUNCTION WILL NOT
DELETE A MOVIE SAVED TO THE HARD DRIVE.
Load a previously saved movie. THIS FUNCTION WILL NOT
LOAD INDIVIDUAL IMAGES PREVIOUSLY CAPTURED IN
NORMAL CAPTURE MODE.
Save a movie of images.
Saving An Individual Image From a Movie
After you load, play, and stop a movie at the desired image, it is possible to save the
individual image seen on the screen. Use the SAVE AS button located on the tool bar to
save the image in the desired location and file format on the local or network drives.
Note: This will save the current image only. To save the entire movie, select
the ‘save’ icon on the movie tab in the enhancement tools.
Loading/Saving an Entire Movie
You can load or save an entire movie by using the load and save icons in the
movie tab in the enhancement tools. When a movie is loaded the loaded
frames will be seen as blue in the movie reel. When a movie is saved a dialog
box will appear prompting you to select the location and name for the movie that you
would like to save the images as.
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Movie Mode: Save/Load Movie Mode setup routines
Two buttons “Save Setup” and “Load Setup” allow you to save and load all Movie Mode
setup parameters. Files are saved as *.mvf files.
Load Setup
Save Setup
Frame Stacking
At the top of the Movie Set-up window is an option for stacking frames. If this selection
was chosen during acquisition of the image Stack Frames will use all previous exposure
information to sequentially add images to one another. Normal Sequence will not
perform this addition. Please note that stacking frames will increase the noise level in
acquired images.
Sample case:
Capture 5 frames at 1-5 sec exposure for total time elapsed 15 sec
Display after summation of following frames:
Frame 1 (1 sec)
Frame 2 (1 + 2 sec)
Frame 3 (1 + 2 + 3 sec)
Frame 4 (1 + 2 + 3 + 4 sec)
Frame 5 (1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 5 sec)
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Capturing a Color Image Using the Movie Function
A color image can be generated by acquiring three images each taken with a red, green
and blue emission filter. Once saved, these images are then combined in the Overlay
pull down menu. Open the image captured with each of the three filters as instructed and
a RGB (red, green, blue) true color image will be generated.
For color imaging, you will need to the following optional filters:
Red Filter
SYPRO Red Filter
Blue Filter
Hoechst Blue Filter
Green Filter
SYBR Green Filter
Note: For multiplexing with 2 different fluorescent stains, you will need the optional
AIC filters designed for each stain.
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Chapter 5: Analysis Tools
Chapter 5: The Image Analysis
Tools in the Toolbox
Analysis Tools in the ToolBox
Image analysis tools are contained within the Tool Box as indicated. This tool set allows
the user to perform manual and automatic counting of colonies and cells, gel scoring,
perform ruler measurements, high density array analysis, molecular weight
determinations, 1D-multiple lane densitometry, and spot densitometry.
5.1 Analyzing Arrays
The ARRAY analysis tools (found in the ToolBox, Analysis Tools) make it easy to
measure the relative gray levels of objects in a uniformly spaced array, such as microtiter
plate wells or dot blots.
These tools allow spot number, orientation and size to be specified. For microtiter plates,
two options are available: measuring the density within a circle (well), or measuring a
central spot and a surrounding torus (halo) separately.
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ARRAY Toolbox
Once these parameters have been set, a template can be saved in a default file and
recalled at a later time. (See Section 3.5 for details on saving defaults.)
Setting up an ARRAY Template
To access the ARRAY tools, open ToolBox, Analysis Tools and click on the ARRAY
button. A template is displayed on the image, depicting the layout of the objects to be
measured. Up to 10,000 objects in a 100x100 array can be measured. (The default is an
array of 96 circles, arranged in 8 rows of 12.)
ARRAY Template
The tool box work area displays a number of buttons and controls for specifying the
number of objects, along with their orientation and sizes.
ARRAY Toolbox
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Analyze arrays with Circles or Squares
Clicking this button will switch between “Use Square” objects and “Use Circle” objects.
The controls labeled Hori. Wells and Ver. Wells let the number of horizontal and
vertical objects be set (to a maximum of 100 and 100, respectively). The controls labeled
Center and Outer let the size of the center and outer circles be set. Click on an arrow to
increase or decrease the number of objects per row or column, or the size of the objects.
As the number and size are adjusted, the template displayed over the image is updated to
reflect the changes.
Aligning the Template
Once the number of objects has been set, adjust the placement of the template.
If the image of the sample is not parallel with the template, the template can be realigned
by adjusting the green line so it is parallel to the top edge of the sample. Place the cursor
on the box at either end of the line. Hold the left mouse button down and drag the line
until it is parallel to the image.
Next, adjust the placement of the template so the objects coincide with the areas of
interest on the image. Move the cursor to any of the square “handles” on the outside of
the template. Hold down the left mouse button and drag the handles until the template is
properly positioned.
If the image is not perfectly rectangular, the template can be skewed by clicking the
Skewing checkbox.
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A Skewed Template
Specifying the Areas to be Measured
For microtiter plate analysis, the toolbox controls labeled Center and Outer specify the
size of the inner circle and outer torus scanned to measure each well. The number in the
center of each of these controls indicates the diameter of the circles. Click on an arrow to
increase or decrease the diameters. As the number is adjusted, the objects on the
template grow larger or smaller, reflecting the changes.
When specifying the size of the area to be measured, exclude shadows or other imaging
artifacts. Depending upon the lighting conditions when the image was captured, there
may be a crescent-shaped shadow obscuring part of the bottom of the wells, especially
those near the edge of the microtiter plate. We recommend decreasing the size of the
sampling area so that these regions are not included.
To measure the total density within each object, reduce the Center value to zero (0) and
adjust the Outer value until the objects on the screen are slightly smaller than the areas of
interest on the image. Reposition the corner objects using the mouse until the objects are
properly aligned over the objects.
Measuring Density
Once the objects are sized and positioned correctly, click on the SCAN button in the tool
box. The density values will be calculated and displayed under each object.
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The values are the average pixel values within the object, adjusted to a scale of 0 to 100.
(0 corresponding to black pixel values, and 100 corresponding to white pixel values.)
If both a center and an outer circle have been specified, two values are displayed. The
upper value corresponds to the inner circle and the lower value corresponds to the torus.
The INVERT Box
The INVERT function reverses the relative density assignments so that 0 corresponds to
white and 100 corresponds to black. If the image has dark areas of interest on a light
background, then INVERT should be selected by placing an “X” in its box. (If the image
has light areas of interest on a dark background, the INVERT option should not be
activated.) Unlike the REVERSE button described in Chapter 3, this function does not
alter the appearance of the image.
Removing Background using the Scan Blank Function
Since a microtiter plate is not completely transparent, it contributes to the density
measured when samples are scanned. A non-uniform light source also affects the density
measured. To ensure that the density measured is attributable only to the sample in the
wells, scan a “blank” before scanning samples.
Load an image of a clean, unused microtiter plate and align the objects as described
above. Once the array has been set up, click on the Scan Blank button. The average
pixel gray value for each object (and torus) is measured and set to zero (0).
Now, when samples are scanned, the gray value of the blank is subtracted from that of the
sample before it is scaled. This ensures that the density reported only reflects the sample
in each well.
When Scan Blank has been selected, the background values obtained apply to all
subsequent scans. To indicate that a background is being applied, the Scan Blank button
changes to read Clear Blank. To turn off this background subtraction function, simply
click on Clear Blank.
Outputting Data
The Output button outputs data as a hard copy or as an ASCII text file which can then be
imported into a spreadsheet for further analysis and/or graphing.
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Output Dialog Box
To create a file, click in the circle next to the File prompt and enter a file path and
name for it in the text box. To send the data to a printer, click on the Video
Printer or Default Printer buttons.
To send data to the clipboard for importing to another program, click on the
Clipboard button.
To Append your data to the same file to allow for easier statistical analysis, click
on Append and type in the file name. AlphaEaseFC will only allow you to
append data to an identical array row and column configuration. Append will
align all data in a column format. Each successive Append will appear in the next
column to the right of the previous appended file.
When the appropriate output source has been selected, click on the OK button to
send the data.
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5.2 Molecular Weight Determination
Introduction
The button in ToolBox, Analysis Tools, labeled MOL. WEIGHT, opens a set of tools
for entering the values of known molecular weight markers and determining the
molecular weights of unknown bands on the image.
When the MOL. WEIGHT button is selected, a function box appears in the area to the
lower left of the screen, and a data box appears on the image. (If the data window
obscures part of the image containing bands of interest, it can be moved.)
Molecular Weight Tools
Molecular Weight Data Box
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At the top of the data box is a bar with two menus: Marker and Query. The area below
the menu bar is divided into two sections. Molecular weight marker data is displayed in
the upper section and the calculated or query data is displayed in the lower section.
Entering Known Molecular Weights for Markers
An unlimited number of molecular weight standards can be defined, either all in one lane,
or in multiple lanes. To input markers, open the Marker menu and select Add Marker.
Note: to enter standards from previously-saved files, see Applying a Set of Saved
Markers below.
Notice that the cursor flashes and has a short, horizontal line associated with it. Move the
cursor to the lane containing the molecular weight standards. Beginning at the top of the
lane, position the cursor so the horizontal line is aligned with the band.
If the SNAP TO PEAK function has been activated, the cursor jumps to the highest pixel
value in the band as the cursor approaches it. If bands are so tightly spaced that the line
is not coinciding with the band, turn off SNAP TO PEAK and place the marker on the
band manually.
When the horizontal line is positioned correctly, click the left mouse button. A dialog
box appears requesting the band's molecular weight. Using the numeric keypad in the
dialog box (or the numbers on the keyboard), enter the known molecular weight.
Alternatively, enter the value using the keyboard.
After entering the molecular weight, press either the OK button in the dialog box (or the
<Enter> key on the keyboard). The dialog box disappears, the number of the band
appears on the image, and the band's data is added to the Markers section of the data box.
The horizontal red line remains, indicating that the cursor is ready to select the next band
as described above.
After entering the value for the last marker, click the Add Markers Complete button
instead of OK. This will deactivate the value-entering function and will return the cursor
to its normal mode. (To reactivate the value-entering function, select Add Marker from
the menu again, or click the right mouse button.)
The Molecular Weight Data Box
The data box is located near the top of the image. Initially, no values are displayed in the
data box. When a molecular weight value is assigned to a band, the following
information is displayed in the data box:
•
Band numbers are assigned beginning with the first band, continuing in the order
selected.
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•
•
•
The position corresponds to the band's location along the y-axis, ranging from 0 to
1030.
The value displayed under the Mol. Wt. heading is the molecular weight value
entered for a known band or the value calculated for an unknown band.
The Rf value for each band is also displayed. Unless otherwise specified,
AlphaEaseFC assumes the origin (Rf value = 0.00) is located at the top of the screen,
and dye front (Rf value = 1.00) is at the bottom of the screen. Using these points as a
frame of reference, AlphaEaseFC calculates Rf values for the intermediate bands.
Molecular Weight Marker and Query Data
If the data box obscures part of the image, it can be resized or moved using Windows®
functions, or it can be hidden using the Hide Data checkbox.
Repositioning and Deleting Markers
Marker band indicators can be repositioned simply by positioning the cursor, clicking,
and dragging the line to the desired location.
To delete a molecular weight marker, point the cursor at the appropriate marker band and
click the left mouse button. This highlights the band in question by putting a red box
around it. (Alternatively, clicking in the data table highlights the marker’s information
and selects the band on the image.)
Click on the Delete Marker function in the Marker menu. The marker is deleted, as is
the band's data in the marker data table. Markers entered after the deleted bands are
renumbered on the image and the data table.
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To delete all the markers and start over, select the Clear Markers function in the Marker
menu.
Determining Molecular Weights of Unknown Bands
After marker values are entered, the molecular weight of any unknown band can be
determined.
Manually Selecting Bands
To indicate unknown bands manually, select the Add Band function from the Query
menu. Just as in Add Marker above, a line will appear attached to the cursor. Point the
cursor at the band of interest and click the mouse button. The molecular weight of the
band is automatically calculated and displayed in the Queries section of the data box.
To select a second band, click the right mouse button and the cursor line will reappear.
Repeat this procedure for all bands for which molecular weights is to be determined.
Note that the molecular weight markers appear in blue while the queries appear in green.
The molecular weight of a band is calculated based on the graph of the known marker
bands. (Note: If a query band lies outside of the markers, it will be extrapolated in “Least
Squares Fit” mode or given a value of “N/A” in “Point-to-Point” mode.) See The
Graph Tool below for more information.
Automatic Band Finding
AlphaEaseFC includes an algorithm for automatically finding bands in query lanes. To
use this function, select Auto Query from the Query menu. A yellow vertical line will
appear attached to the cursor. Position the line over the lane of interest and click the left
mouse button. The bands in the lanes will be selected automatically, and their data will
appear in the Data box.
Repositioning and Deleting Bands
Bands can be repositioned simply by positioning the cursor, clicking, and dragging the
band to the desired location.
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To delete an unknown band indicator, point the cursor at the band and click the left
mouse button. The band in question is highlighted. (Alternatively, clicking in the data
table highlights the band’s information and selects it on the image.)
Click on the Delete Band function in the Query menu. The band will be deleted, as will
the band's data in the query data table. Bands entered after the one deleted are
renumbered on the image and the data table.
To delete all the queried bands, select the Clear Queries function in the Query menu.
Using the Molecular Weight Standards Library
AlphaEaseFC contains a library of DNA and protein molecular weight standards.
Additional sets of markers can also be added to this library for later access. For a
complete list of pre-loaded files and the band sizes in each, see Appendix B.
Applying a Set of Saved Markers
From the Marker menu in the data box, select Get Markers from File. A dialog box
appears.
Get Markers from File Dialog Box
Using the left mouse button, click on the name of the file to be loaded. That name is then
highlighted in the list and appears in the text box below the File Name: prompt.
The current directory path is shown beneath the Folders heading. Below this is a
graphical depiction of the path, and the sub-directories of the current directory. If the file
of interest is in a different directory than the one open, double-click on the appropriate
folder icon.
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Once the file has been selected, click on the OK button to load the file. (Alternatively,
double-click on the file name.) The dialog box disappears and a new dialog box appears.
Auto Load Dialog Box
This box gives the file name selected, as well as the number of markers contained within
the file. It also give the user the option of auto-loading the file.
If Yes is selected, a vertical line will appear attached to the cursor. Place the vertical line
in the marker lane on the gel, and click. AlphaEaseFC will automatically search for the
markers in the lane. In the above example, the brightest 7 bands in the lane would be
selected, and the values for Boe II’s 100 bp DNA marker ladder would be assigned to the
bands.
If No is selected, AlphaEaseFC will display a cursor with a red line attached. Text in the
upper right-hand corner of the image window will tell the user how many markers have
been entered, and the value of the next marker to be entered.
Manual Load Dialog
To begin entering markers, move the cursor to the top band in the lane and align the
horizontal line with the band. Click the left mouse button. Notice that the position for that
band is added to the markers data table.
Move the cursor to the next band, click the left mouse button again to assign the next
value in the series. Repeat this process until the values of all the marker bands are
assigned.
To quit this function before all markers have been placed, click the right mouse button.
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Adding a Set of Molecular Weight Markers to the Library
If the same set of molecular weight markers will be run repeatedly, there is no need to
enter values on each new image. Instead, save the molecular weight values in a file and
apply them to the marker lane of any subsequent images.
To save a set of molecular weight standards, click on Write Markers to File in the
Marker menu after the marker values have been entered.
Following Windows conventions (255 characters or less), enter a new file name in the
text box below the File Name: prompt. AlphaEaseFC will automatically give the
appropriate 3-character extension.
The current directory path is shown beneath the Directories heading. Below this is a
graphical depiction of the path, and the sub-directories of the current directory. If the file
is to be saved in a different directory than the one open, double-click on the appropriate
folder icon.
Alternate disk drives can be accessed using the Drives heading.
Once a name has been entered and the appropriate directory has been accessed, click OK.
All of the marker values that are currently in the Data window will be saved to this new
file. To access them in the future, follow the steps in Applying a Set of Saved Markers
above.
Outputting Data
The Output function in the Query menu outputs data as a hard copy or as an ASCII text
file which can then be imported into a spreadsheet for further analysis and/or graphing.
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Output Dialog Box
To create a file, click in the box next to the File prompt and enter a path and file name for
it in the text box. To send the data to a printer, click on the Video Printer or Default
Printer buttons. To send data to the clipboard for importing to another program, click on
the Clipboard button. When the appropriate output source has been selected, click on the
OK button to send the data.
Special Functions:
Snap to Peak
This feature makes it easier to place the cursor on a band. If the SNAP TO PEAK
function has been activated, the cursor jumps to the highest pixel value in the band as the
cursor approaches it.
If bands are so tightly spaced that the line is not coinciding with the band, turn off SNAP
TO PEAK and place the marker on the band manually.
If the cursor is jumping to areas between bands instead of the bands themselves, check to
see that INVERT is properly set. (See below for more information.)
The INVERT Button
The INVERT function reverses the gray scale assignments so that 0 corresponds to white
and 4,095 corresponds to black. If the image has dark bands and light background, then
INVERT should be selected by placing an “X” in its box. (If the image has light bands
and dark background, the INVERT option should not be activated.) Unlike the
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REVERSE button described in Chapter 3, this function does not alter the appearance of
the image.
This function is especially important when using Snap to Peak. If INVERT is
incorrectly set, the cursor will snap to areas between peaks rather than finding peaks.
Calculating Rf Values
To obtain accurate Rf values, specify the location of the wells (i.e., origin) and the dye
front using the functions Set Well Pos./Start and Set Dye Front/End both found in the
Marker menu.
To designate the location of the wells, point the cursor at Set Well Pos./Start. Position
the cursor so it is pointing anywhere along the wells and click the left mouse button. A
horizontal bar appears, defining the location of the origin. By clicking and dragging, the
bar can be moved for better positioning.
Repeat this procedure using Set Dye Front/End to indicate the location of the dye front.
Once the origin and dye front have been defined, they are used to calculate the Rf values
of any bands that are added. If dye fronts are not assigned, AlphaEaseFC uses the top
and bottom of the image as the boundaries for calculating Rf values.
The Molecular Weight Cursor Box
Molecular Weight Cursor Box
The MW. CURSOR box, found in the Molecular Weight toolbox, reports the location
on the y-axis, the molecular weight and the Rf value of the current position of the cursor.
These data are updated as the cursor is moved. This information can be helpful for
positioning the cursor in a precise location, or for a quick estimate of a band’s size.
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The Graph Tool
The Graph function is found in the lower left corner of the Molecular Weight tools box.
Molecular Weight Tools
Clicking in the Graph box displays the semi-log graph of the molecular weight data that
is used to calculate the molecular weights of unknown bands. (To remove the graph
window from the display, click on the Graph checkbox a second time.) The x-axis
corresponds to the band's vertical location on the screen, and the y-axis is a log
representation of molecular weight. By clicking on the appropriate button, the data can
be toggled between a least squares fit and a point-to-point fit.
Example of a Point-to-Point Graph
Example of a Least Squares Fit Graph
The graph is useful to verify that the molecular weight data is entered correctly, and can
help determine the most linear region of the molecular weight standards. Further, if a
query band is clicked, its position will be shown on the graph by dashed lines (as shown
above).
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5.3 1D-Multi (Lane Densitometry)
The 1D-Multi button in ToolBox, Analysis Tools accesses a set of densitometry tools
with which bands on a gel can be scanned and quantitated in a lane format. There are
two different ways in which this can be done, Auto Lane and Auto Grid. Auto Grid
allows the user to manually define the lane number, lane shape, and scan width of the
Grid. Auto Lane is a completely automated feature which will automatically define lane
number, and band finding parameters for the user. Both detection methods provide
similar data. Image particulars and user preference will determine which method works
best.
Auto Grid
When the 1D-Multi tab is selected the Auto Grid template appears on the image and the
following functions are displayed:
1D-Multi tools
1D-Multi Template
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Setting up the Lane Template
When the 1D-Multi button is clicked, a lane template appears on the image. The red lines
indicate the borders of adjacent lanes. The green lines define the Scan Width (described
below).
Under the heading Grid Controls, the number of lanes can be specified. The number
under the title Lanes indicates the number of lanes and can be changed by clicking the
right (increase) or left (decrease) arrows. As the lane number is adjusted, the template
displayed over the image is updated to reflect the changes.
Once the number of lanes has been set, the template should be adjusted so it coincides
with the lanes on the image.
If the lanes on the gel are horizontally oriented (sideways) the template can be rotated.
To change the orientation of the template to coincide with the image, click the ROTATE
checkbox. The template will rotate 90° counterclockwise. Clicking in the check box
again ("X" disappears) rotates the template 90° clockwise, restoring it to its original
orientation.
After specifying the correct number of lanes and setting the orientation, use the mouse to
drag the outside borders of the template so they frame the lanes to be scanned. Clicking
on or within any border repositions the template. Clicking on the blue “handles”
surrounding the template resizes it.
If the lanes of the gel are not perfectly straight, click the SKEWING checkbox. The
template will change to show four “handles” -- one at each corner of the template.
Position each corner of the template until it is positioned appropriately.
Adjust the template until the border of the template frames the lanes to be scanned and
the red lines lie between each of the lanes.
Skewed 1D-Multi Template Properly Aligned on a Gel
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The Invert check box should be selected if the image being analyzed is a dark sample on
a white background. These are usually colorimetric gels such as Coomassie Blue.
Reversing the image on the Contrast Adjustment window would NOT require the user to
select invert.
Specifying the Scan Width
The Scan Width (the green line within each lane) is the area from which the pixel
density is measured. The control labeled WIDTH sets the Scan Width. The number in
the center of this control indicates the current Scan Width setting. It can be adjusted by
clicking on the right (increase) or left (decrease) arrows. As the setting is changed, the
template displayed on the image is updated to reflect the changes.
The density values for 1D-Multi graphs are determined by the average pixel density
between the green lines on the template. A scan width that is too narrow may not include
enough information and can result in a noisy graph. By contrast, a wide scan width can
incorporate background pixels that will reduce the pixel average and dilute the actual
data. Therefore, to generate the most meaningful quantitative data, set the width to
include as much of the bands as possible without including regions of background. The
scan width should not exceed the band edges and cannot exceed the red lane limit.
Scan Width of 3 = Too Narrow (data noisy and graphs jagged)
Scan Width of Entire Lane = Too Wide (peak heights reduced due to inclusion of
background pixels)
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Recommended Scan Width (middle of bands scanned; “smiling” edges excluded)
Scanning the Image
When the AUTOGRID button is clicked, the densities of each lane are measured, and
information is displayed in several quadrants of the screen:
• The graphs for each lane scanned are displayed in the lower left.
• The active graph is displayed in the upper quadrant of the screen.
• Peak information for the active graph is displayed in a data table in the lower right.
• The Image is displayed behind the above windows and can be viewed by reducing the
individual display windows.
Image Area of Sample Scan
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Graph Display
Graphs representing all the lanes on the template are shown in the lower left-hand
quadrant.
When AUTOGRID is first selected, the active graph is the one corresponding to Lane 1.
To select a different lane, simply click on its graph, and it will fill the Active Graph
quadrant.
AlphaEaseFC uses the following color-coding:
• the active graph is shown in white
• graphs that have been viewed already are shown in yellow
• graphs that have not yet been viewed are shown in gray
When the template contains many lanes, there may be too many graphs to see reasonable
detail. It is possible to view only four graphs at a time by deselecting Show All Lanes.
This function is found under the function button of the window.
Deselecting Show All Lanes
The Active Graph
The active graph is shown in the upper quadrant. The x-axis represents the distance (in
pixels) from the top of the template. The y-axis represents the average pixel intensity
across the width of the scan.
Note: Lane scans are shown without axes in order to show as much detail as possible in a
small window. To show the graph’s axes, choose Axes from the Options pull down
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menu. To change the background color of the graph, choose Background Color from
the Options pull down menu.
AlphaEaseFC automatically detects the peaks and integrates the area under each peak.
Adjustments that can be made manually are described below.
The Data Window
Once a peak is defined, its integration data and associated information are displayed in a
table located in the lower right quadrant of the screen. The data table is updated any time
a peak is deleted or added, peak boundaries are redefined, or the background value is reset.
Example of a Quantitation Data Table
PEAK is the number assigned to each peak on the graph beginning on the left and
moving right.
DIST is the distance (in pixels) that each peak starts from the beginning of the line scan.
WIDTH and HEIGHT refer to the size of each peak.
AREA is the integrated area under each peak and represents band intensity.% is the
percentage each peak contributes to the total density. (The sum of this column will be
100% for each lane).
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Adjusting Peak Detection Parameters:
Minimum Area, Height and Width
Once the graph to be analyzed has been selected and is displayed in the upper right of the
screen, the tools in the lower left of the screen change to allow adjustment of the
automatic peak finder parameters.
Tools For Adjusting Automatic Peak Finding Parameters
There are three attributes that determine whether or not the automatic peak finder
recognizes a region of the graph as a peak: minimum area, minimum height and
minimum width. Click on the arrow(s) associated with the MIN. AREA, MIN. HEIGHT
and MIN. WIDTH headings to adjust these settings.
As these parameters are adjusted, the automatic peak finder rescans the graph and defines
the peaks based on the new settings. A peak is recognized only if it meets these
minimum criteria.
Note: Using the MIN. WIDTH control is the quickest way to regulate the number of
peaks detected by the automatic peak finder.
Minimum Width is 17
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Minimum Width is 18
Peak Detection Algorithms
If these adjustments do not allow AlphaEaseFC to adequately find the peaks on a sample,
the peak detection algorithms can be manually adjusted. Select Peak Detection
Controls from the Options menu. The following window will appear:
Peak Detection Controls Dialog Box
Adjust these controls but clicking on the increase and decrease arrows.
As Intensity Variation Sensitivity increases, the graph in the middle will look more and
more block-like. The result, when clicking OK will be that fewer peaks are defined.
Min. Angle refers to the angle at which AlphaEaseFC will consider a peak to be
beginning or ending. The lower the angle, the more peaks defined.
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Use points for angle measure refers to the number of data points that will be scanned
at once to determine an angle. The larger the number of points, the less sensitive the
algorithm (ie. the fewer peaks that will be defined).
Editing Peaks:
Editing Peak Boundaries
The boundaries of existing peaks can be readjusted to make the peaks wider or narrower.
To adjust either peak boundary, click on the peak to select it. Next, point the cursor at
the vertical boundary line, hold down the left mouse button and drag the line to the
desired location. When it is in place, release the mouse button.
The data table is automatically updated to reflect any adjustments. Both the peak and the
data in the data table will be blue to indicate that this is a user-defined (vs. automatically
detected) peak.
Manually Adding Peaks
Additional peaks can be defined manually using the Add Peak function (in the
Integration menu). When this function is selected, a vertical line appears. Position the
vertical line so it corresponds to the left edge of the peak, click the left mouse button to
define the left boundary of the peak, then move the cursor to the right edge of the peak
and click again to define the right boundary. The peak area between the 2 limits now
appears shaded, and the data table is automatically updated. Both the peak and the data in
the data table will be blue to indicate that this is a user-defined (vs. automatically
detected) peak. To define a second peak, click the right mouse button to reactivate the
cursor.
Deleting Peaks
A peak can be deleted by clicking on the peak and selecting Remove Peak from the
Integration menu. The selected peak's integration disappears, and the integrated peaks to
the right are renumbered accordingly.
A peak can also be deleted by clicking on its entry in the data table window and hitting
the <Delete> key on the keyboard. To prevent accidental deletions, a dialog box will
open, asking for confirmation.
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Visualizing Peak Placements
To determine exactly where a peak is located relative to the original image, it is often
helpful to see the graph and the gel image in the same orientation. The Show Strip
function (found in the Options menu) displays the area of the gel that has been defined as
a lane across the length of the x-axis.
Graph With Show Strip Selected
Note: If Show Strip fails to show a portion of the image, check that the
appropriate driver for the VGA card is selected. (See Appendix X or Section 1.3 for
more information.)
Resetting Peak Edits
The Auto Peak function in the Integration menu recalls the automatic peak finding
algorithm used when the graph was first opened. Note: If the Auto Peak Detection
Parameters (height, width and area) have been changed, these will be the variables used
with the algorithm, and the peaks may differ.
Clearing All Peaks
To delete all the defined peaks on a graph at once, click on the Clear All Peaks function
in the Integration menu.
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Adjusting the Baseline:
As a default, the baseline value is set to Auto Base. As the baseline is adjusted, the
values for all peaks are updated to reflect the new baseline.
All of the following functions are found in the Background Subtraction menu:
Auto Base
This method breaks the red line defining the left boundary of the lane into sixteen
regions, and outputs sixteen points which reflect the average backgrounds across those
sixteen regions. The user can manipulate the 16 points by clicking and dragging. The
user may also designate more points than the 16 and manipulate those in the same
fashion.
Intra-Lane
This method uses the lower of the two values at the edges of the lane along its travel as
the background. If the section of the image is used is wider than the bands, then this is a
very effective way of removing co-migrating material from your measurements. This
method should only be used if the bands are completely enclosed. This is because when
the edges of your lane area intersect any of your bands, band material will be considered
as background, severely affecting your results.
Rubber Band
This method can be thought of as stretching a rubber band underneath the lane profile.
This option does not work well if the values at the ends of the intensity profile are lower
than the rest of the intensity pixels. We do not recommend this method for images with
poorly separated bands.
Minimum Profile
This method takes the lowest value on the profile of each lane as the background for that
lane. We do not recommend this method for lanes where the beginning or end of the lane
is the lowest point as this is dependent on where the lane boundary was placed when it
was defined. This can be hard to repeat between analysis of the same gel.
Valley to Valley
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This method requires that you have performed band detection first. The background is
taken as the line between the edges of the bands in the lane. You enter a value (see below
in setting parameters) of maximum slope in the accompanying entry box to avoid
situations where the edge between overlapping bands, which is not at the background
intensity, causes the background to climb too high.
Rolling Disc
This method requires you to enter a parameter for the size of the disc (see below in
setting parameters) in the entry box. This option calculates the background as if a disc,
with the radius you have entered, were rolling underneath the lane profile. The larger the
radius of the disc, the less the background rises with the profile.
Set Parameters:
Set parameters dialog box
Above dialog box is used to change values for Rolling Disc and Valley to Valley
background methods.
Base Lock
The Base Lock function will designate the active graph baseline for all of the lanes in
the data table. To de-select this option click on the Base Lock a second time. The check
mark will disappear.
Horizontal Base
Activating the Horizontal Base function will move the baseline to the 0 position (no
background). The baseline can be moved vertically by clicking the baseline and dragging
it upwards.
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Reset Base
Activating the Reset Base function will move the baseline to the 0 position (no
background). Unlike Horizontal Base the baseline cannot be moved.
Base Subtract
This selection will subtract the current baseline from the intensity value line. Un-check
Base Subtract to deactivate this feature.
Interpreting 1D-Multi Data
Alpha Ease™ provides a variety of tools to help interpret 1D scan data. These tools are
found in the toolbox at the bottom of the screen, and in the Data pull down menu in each
graph window.
Data Interpretation Tools
V. Line
Typically, the peaks on a graph correspond to the bands in a lane. The V. Line tool can
help determine if the peaks on two different graphs represent bands at the same molecular
weight position (i.e. the same distance from the top of the gel).
To compare the positions of peaks on different graphs, click on the V. Line checkbox. A
vertical line which can be moved across the graphs will appear. Use this line to
determine if two peaks are located in the same position
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Using the V.LINE
The line also contains hash marks, which represent pixel intensities. Use this information
for a quick comparison of peak heights. Note: The hash marks are most useful when
only four graphs are shown so that enough detail is displayed. To accomplish this, click
on the selection button in the upper left corner of the window and deselect Show All
Lanes.
Alternatively, the intensity value at the point where the V.Line crosses the graph can be
displayed. Hold the <shift> key and click the right mouse button to toggle between
intensity values and hash marks.
3-D View
The 3-D View feature changes the appearance of the graphs to a 3-dimensional display.
This can be useful in understanding how data was obtained, and in visualizing any
anomalies that occur on the gel.
3D Scan
The depth of the display is determined by the Scan Width (i.e. the above scan has a
width of 35 and is displayed in 3-D mode as 35 graphs). This function acts like a toggle:
click in the box next to 3-D View to activate the function; click in the box again to
deactivate it and return the graphs to their original appearance.
Note: If a lane has been scanned with a large width, it may take a long time to
display the graph in 3D mode. If this is the case, select 3D View: Show Hidden
Lines from the utility menu in the graph window. This will result in a graph that is
not as “clean,” but which displays on the screen very quickly.
Smooth Data
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The Smooth Data function (found in the Data menu) minimizes single pixel
background noise in a lane.
original graph
smoothed graph
When this function is selected, the menu option changes to “Unsmooth Data.”
Selecting this undoes the smoothing operation.
The Invert Button
The INVERT function reverses the gray scale assignments, so that zero corresponds to
white and 4,096 corresponds to black. This function can be selected by placing an “X” in
the INVERT checkbox, or by selecting Invert Data from a graph’s Data pull down
menu.
If the image has dark bands and light background, then INVERT should be selected.
If the image has light bands and dark background, the INVERT option should not be
activated.
On the graph, the regions that were peaks are now closer to the baseline and those that
were near the baseline are now peaks.
original graph inverted graph
Since the baseline is determined when the image is initially scanned, it may be necessary
to use the Reset Baseline function to set an accurate baseline for newly-inverted data.
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When the Invert Data function is activated from the pull down menu, the menu option
changes to “Uninvert Data.” Selecting this undoes the inverting operation.
Unlike the REVERSE button described in Chapter 2, this function does not alter the
appearance of the image, but does change the data.
Overlaying Graphs
When comparing the bands in one lane with those in another it is often convenient to
display the graphs so that one is superimposed over another. After clicking on a graph so
that it is enlarged in the image area, select the Overlay Control function (from the Data
menu) to display the Lane Overlay Control dialog box. In this dialog box, specify the
lane(s) whose graph(s) should be superimposed and the color and line pattern in which
they should be displayed.
•
•
•
•
The first column in the dialog box contains the numbers of the graphs which can be
superimposed.
The second column reports whether or not the graph of a particular lane is currently
superimposed. These ON/OFF settings toggle back and forth by clicking on them.
The colored bar in the third column indicates the color in which a graph will be
displayed when it is superimposed. To select a color option, click on the color bar
until the desired color is shown.
The last column in the dialog box specifies the pattern of the line when the graph is
superimposed. To select a pattern, click on the current pattern until the desired
pattern is shown.
It is especially important to choose different patterns if the graphs will be printed,
as different colors cannot be distinguished using a gray scale printer.
When the selections have been made, click on the DONE button to dismiss the dialog
box and superimpose the selected graph(s). (If no graphs have been selected, the dialog
box is simply dismissed.)
Three Graphs Overlaid
To turn all graph superimposing off, click on the ALLOFF button at the bottom of the
dialog box.
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Molecular Weight (MW), Mass and Band Scoring integrated into
1D-Multi
A new “Analysis” menu item has been added to 1D-Multi. Under this menu the user now
has the option of calculating Molecular Weight and/or Mass. The user can also access
the Band Scoring feature from this menu. This unifies four important analysis tools into
one area of the software and reports Mass, Rf, and MW on one report.
Molecular Weight and Mass integration:
FC v3.0 supports Mass calculations based on the users MW standard. Note the new
Checkbox in the Molecular Weight Standard dialog window labeled “Calibrate Mass
using MW std lane”.
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Checking the checkbox activates the “Enter total mass per lane” field and reveals the
choices for calculating the Mass values.
Procedure:
If you would like to calculate Mass based on your MW Standard Lane follow these steps.
1) Check the “Calibrate Mass using MW std lane” checkbox.
2) Enter the total mass that was loaded into the MW standard lane into the ‘total mass
per lane’ field.
3) Select the Calculation method to be used for Mass calculation.
4) Click the Open Marker or Add Marker buttons and apply MW standard markers in
the normal way.
5) Click OK or Apply.
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The Mass for all bands is now calculated based on the total mass entered for the MW
standard lane and reported in one report.
Note Legend: Describes which lanes/bands make up the
MW and Mass standard curve values. Also notes which
regression method has been used to calculate the MW and
Mass curves.
mws: Molecular Weight Marker
ms: Mass Standard Marker
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Saving and Loading Mass Standards
Mass standard files can be loaded onto any image and saved for future reference. To load
a marker, select Mass Standard under the Analysis pull down menu. A Mass Standard
dialog box will show on the screen:
Select Add Mass Std to add the first marker. Pull the cursor onto the image to select the
band of interest and click once on the left mouse button to add the marker. In autogrid,
this same function is accomplished in the individual lane profiles instead of the image
area. Type the marker value into the dialog box. Continue this process until all of the
standards have been loaded.
Adding a marker of interest in Autogrid …
and in Autolane
After the mass standards have all been entered, select Save Std File. Then move the
cursor to the lane that contains the markers of interest. A yellow line will appear in
autolane and the lane profile will turn blue in autogrid. To select the lane of interest click
once on the left mouse button and a new dialog box will appear allowing for the name of
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the file to be saved in the directory of interest. Select apply to calculate the unknown
values of the markers in the rest of the lanes.
Saving a Mass Standard file in Autogrid…
And in Autolane
Mass Standard files can be loaded by selecting Add Mass Std in either autolane or
autogrid. Browse through the directories to find the marker file of interest, then select the
file name and click on open. The user will have the option to add the markers manually
or to auto-load the markers. Markers can be auto-loaded by selecting yes in the dialog
box and then pointing to the appropriate lane on the gel in autolane, or the appropriate
lane profile in autogrid. To add the markers one at a time, select no in the dialog box and
then point to the individual bands and click once on the left mouse button on the band of
interest. Continue to do this until all of the markers have been loaded. Select apply to
calculate the unknown mass values in the rest of the image.
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Band Scoring
Lane #’s to score: Choose the lanes to score by highlighting the lanes to be included.
Score based on: Select the parameter to base the scoring on. The choices are Area,
Mass, and Height. The Area and Height are calculated automatically in 1D multi. In
order to use the Mass as the scoring parameter the user must calculate the Mass of every
band by applying a Mass Standard. This can be done separately or in conjunction with
MW calculations. See the section above on Molecular Weight and Mass integration.
Select Scoring Method: Select the scoring method of interest. The choices are:
Present/Absent; High/Medium/Low/Absent; % of control; and Quantity.
• Present/Absent: this method is used as a qualitative measurement for review.
The researcher is interested in whether or not a lane has a specific band of
interest based on some criteria (area, mass, or height).
• Additional Criteria: When choosing Present/Absent as the scoring method the
user must enter a value for determining the presence or absence. The value is
a percent. When the value of an unknown band falls below that percentage
value it is classified as Absent, when it exceeds the value it is classified as
Present.
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•
High/Medium/Low/Absent: This method is used to classify bands into groups
based on Area, Mass, or Height. The researcher will determine break points
for each classification (high, medium, low, and absent). The software will
place each band into one of these classifications depending on the user entered
criteria.
• Additional Criteria: When choosing the High/Medium/Low/Absent
method the user must enter in values to use as break points for each of
these classifications. The values entered are percentages of the reference
band based on the parameter chosen in the “score based on” field.
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Outputting Quantitative Data
The OUTPUT button (located in the 1D-Multi tools section at the lower left of the
screen) transfers the peak integration data table to a printer, to the computer’s clipboard,
or to an ASCII file.
Click on the appropriate box to specify where the data should be sent. (If creating a file,
enter a name for it in the text box.)
Next, click on the appropriate box below the Select Lanes prompt to specify whether
the output should include information from only the currently selected lane or from all
the lanes, which have been analyzed. Note: if a lane has not been viewed (ie. it is
displayed in gray), its data will not be contained in the output.
To send the data, click on the OK button.
Exporting Graphs
The To Clipboard function (found in the Options pull down menu) generates a bitmap
of the graph, or an ASCII file of all the data points that comprise the graph. To view the
information, open Clipboard Viewer (found in the Main window of Program Manager).
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The file can also be exported to other software programs, such as spreadsheets, for further
peak analysis. To access the file, enter the desired program (such as Microsoft® Word or
Microsoft® Excel). From the program’s “Edit” menu, select “Paste”. The information
will be pasted into the open document.
Exiting 1D-Multi
Activating the EXIT function dismisses the graphs, and exits Scan mode, leaving only
the image with the lane template on the screen.
Exiting Scan Mode
To re-enter 1D-Multi, click the AUTOGRID button again.
To exit 1D-Multi altogether, select another function from the ToolBox.
Auto Lane
If Auto Lane is selected from the main 1D Multi tab the following interface will appear:
Auto Lane
Black Bands or White Bands
Auto Lane will automatically detect whether the image about to be analyzed represents
white bands on a dark background (eg fluorescence) or dark bands on a white background
(eg Coomassie Blue gel, x ray film) and select either Black Band or White Band. The
user should always check to see that the software has correctly characterized the image as
Black or White Band. The user can override the automatic selection.
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Vertical Lanes or Horizontal Lanes
If the gel image has vertical lanes the Vertical Lanes option should be checked. If the
image’s lanes run horizontally then the Horizontal Lanes option should be chosen. The
software will not automatically detect the lane orientation so the user should aware of this
parameter.
Sensitivity Adjustment Bar
This feature changes the number of bands the software will find using a sensitivity scale
of 0-9. The lower the number (slider bar left) the less bands the software will find, and
the greater the number (slider bar right) the more bands the software will find. Upon
changing the sensitivity, Find Bands must be selected for the software to “re-find” the
bands.
Area of Interest Drawing
It is recommended that the user draw an area of interest on the image in order for faster
and more accurate detection of lanes and bands. An area of interest is drawn using the
left mouse button to click and drag (draw) a box shaped region around the sample area.
Image artifacts ( well position marks etc) should be left out of the area of interest as the
software may record these as bands. After an area of interest is drawn the Find Lanes
button should be selected. The software will automatically find lanes and bands within
each lane. An area of interest need not be drawn for the automatic detection Find Lanes
to work. The analyzed image and overlaid data table will now appear.
Analyzed Image
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Auto Lane Profile and Data Table
Data Table and Editing of Auto Lane
When the AUTO LANE button is clicked, the lanes are designated, bands found and the
information is displayed in three windows: the upper window is the Active Graph, the
lower left is the Graph Display and the lower right is the Data Window. The 1D-Multi
tab will also change to display the Auto Lane Editing functions. The data and display of
Auto Lane is very similar to that given in the AutoGrid feature described above.
Graph Display
Graphs representing all the lanes on the template are shown in the lower left-hand
quadrant.
Lane 1 will be the default “active” lane when the scan is initially done. To select a
different lane, simply click on its graph, and it will fill the Active Graph quadrant.
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AlphaEaseFC uses the following color-coding:
• the active graph is shown in white
• graphs that have been viewed already are shown in yellow
• graphs that have not yet been viewed are shown in gray
All of the lanes can be displayed in the graph display quadrant by selecting “Show All
Lanes” under the Options drop down menu in the Profile and Data window. By
deselecting “Show All Lanes” only the first several lanes are shown providing more
detail. A scroll bar allows for the other lanes to be viewed.
The Active Graph
The active graph is shown in the upper quadrant. The x-axis represents the distance (in
pixels) from the top of the template. The y-axis represents the average pixel intensity
across the width of the scan.
Visualization of the Active Graph:
The drop down selections in the profile and data table (Data, BaseLine and Options)
allow for the user to perform editing, visualization and outputting tasks pertaining to this
window.
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Data
The data drop down menu allows for the user to superimpose different lanes onto the
Active Window using the Overlay Control selection. (See Auto Grid Overlay Control
above for detailed instructions.)
Output Data
This data can be outputted in several ways. Select Output from the Data menu. This tool
allows you to output the 1D-Multi data to a printer, the clipboard, or to a file.
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Baseline
Background subtraction can be preformed using this menu. (See Auto Grid Baseline
Control described previously in this section for detailed instructions). Please note that
background subtraction in AutoLane can have a dramatic effect on how many peaks are
recognized as bands. Try changing the background subtraction to optimize band
recognition.
Options
Background Color allows the user to select a variety of different background colors for
the Active Graph. Axes allows the user to display the axes on the graph (x axis = pixel
distance down the lane, y axis = pixel intensity in gray scale). Show Strip will display a
strip of the lane being currently analyzed. Select Window will allow the user to choose
which of the data table windows to display. Print will allow the user to print any or all of
the profile and data table windows. Clipboard will allow the user to send any or all of the
profile and data table windows to the clipboard for pasting into different programs (eg
Excel™).
Options drop down menu
Editing Peak Boundaries
The boundaries of existing peaks can be readjusted to make the peaks wider or narrower.
To adjust either peak boundary, click on the peak to select it. Next, point the cursor at
the vertical boundary line, hold down the left mouse button and drag the line to the
desired location. When it is in place, release the mouse button.
The data table is automatically updated to reflect any adjustments. Both the peak and the
data in the data table will be blue to indicate that this is a user-defined (vs. automatically
detected) peak.
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The Data Window
Once a peak is defined, its integration data and associated information are displayed in a
table located in the lower right quadrant of the screen. The data table is updated any time
a peak is deleted or added, peak boundaries are redefined, or the background value is reset.
Example of an Auto Lane Data Table
PEAK is the number assigned to each peak on the graph beginning on the left and
moving right.
DIST is the distance (in pixels) that each peak starts from the beginning of the line scan.
WIDTH and HEIGHT refer to the size of each peak.
AREA is the integrated area under each peak. This number reflects the intensity of
each peak.
% is the percentage each peak contributes to the total density measured on the graph.
(The sum of this column will be 100% for each lane.)
Auto Lane Editing Features
After the image has been evaluated for lanes and bands the following editing options will
appear in the 1D Multi tab.
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Add Lane
This feature allows an additional lane to be placed on the image. Once the button is
selected the additional lane can be viewed and positioned on the image. A left mouse
click will place the lane on the image. The data tables will readjust accordingly, and the
bands within the lane calculated. As with most AlphaEaseFC features a right mouse
click will reactivate the function and another lane will be ready to be added.
Edit Lanes
This feature allows for the horizontal manipulation of the center line in each of the found
bands. The intensity of each band (area) will be altered, as the intensity peak is refigured to match the pixels surrounding the centroid mark.
Delete Lane
This selection will activate the cursor to delete a lane on the gel image. After selecting
the button left mouse click on the lane in the image to delete. As with all AlphaEaseFC
functions a right mouse click will reactivate the function for further lane deletions
Add Band
This selection will activate the cursor to add a band onto the gel image. After selecting
the button left mouse click on the area in the gel in which a band should be added. As
with all AlphaEaseFC functions a right mouse click will reactivate the function for
further band additions.
Find Bands
This selection will re-detect the bands in the lanes based upon a new sensitivity setting 09. The higher the sensitivity the more bands the software will find.
Delete Bands
This selection will activate the cursor to delete a band in the gel image. After selecting
the button, left mouse click on the area in the gel in which a band should be added. As
with all AlphaEaseFC functions a right mouse click will reactivate the function for
further band deletions.
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Display Options
This feature allows the user to change the visual display of the lanes and bands on the
analyzed image.
• Under Band Representation, the Cross selection designates bands with a cross
symbol. The Box selection will display a 2 dimensional box around each of the
bands.
• Lane Property gives the option of either showing the lane name by number
(Numerical) or by letter (Character).
• Show Center Line selection displays the vertical line which runs through the
center of each of the bands.
• Show Lane Bounds displays the perimeter of each of the lanes found in the gel.
• Show Band Properties turns the band property display on/off. The Band
Property value to be displayed is selected under Band Property.
• Band Property allows the user to select what value to display as the bands
property. The choices are Position (from top to bottom) in Numerals, Position
(from top to bottom) in Characters, Rf, Adjusted Rf, or Molecular Weight.
Options
Exit
This button will return the user to the main 1D Multi page. Data on the analyzed image
will be lost.
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Gel Smiling Correction with Rf Curve Tool
The AutoLane portion of the software contains the Rf Curve tool which allows the user to
adjust for gel smiling or curvature. Using this tool will increase the accuracy of
Molecular Weight calculations and Automatic Band Matching. After the Rf Curves have
been applied a new column of data will be generated, Adjusted Rf. The Rf. values
reported are relative values from 0 to 1 where 0 is the origin and 1 is the lane front
without correction for gel smiling as commonly occurs in gel electrophoresis. The
Adjusted Rf. (Adj. Rf.) is the corrected value.
Suggestions:
The software calculates Adjusted Rf. based on the bands position relative to the nearest
Rf Curve. When the band lies between two Rf curves with different curvatures a
weighting is applied where greater weight is given to the nearest Rf Curve. For the most
accurate calculations enough curves should be added to properly mimic the curvature of
the sample. We also suggest placing at least one Rf Curve above the top most band and
below the bottom most band. If these curves are left out the software will use the lane
origin and front as the first and last curves. These are assumed to be straight.
Applying Rf. Curves
After identifying lanes in AutoLane the following dialog box appears.
Select the Rf Curve Tool by clicking the associated button.
Click on the image to apply the curve. Clicking within the lane boundaries will produce
a three point curve with an anchor point each on the outside of the first and last lanes and
one at the position of the mouse click. Clicking outside the lane boundaries to apply a
curve will create a two point curve with anchor points on either extreme.
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Adjust the curve by dragging the yellow anchor points.
Adding/Removing Anchor Points
Anchor points can be added by clicking on or near any Rf Curve. When the cursor
changes to a wand it will add an anchor point to the nearest curve by clicking the left
mouse button once. Additionally, when the cursor is a wand, clicking once on the right
mouse button will remove the curve. If the cursor is a standard arrow it is not close
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enough to an Rf Curve and will apply a new curve. If the cursor is a plus sign, then the
cursor is over an anchor point, and clicking once on the right mouse button will remove
the point. To move a curve far from its origin click and drag on the curve.
Adjusting Anchor Points
Anchor points can be adjusted or moved by clicking and dragging the anchor point from
one location to the next.
Additional Rf. Curves
Apply enough Curves to properly mimic the curvature of your sample. The more curves
applied, the more accurate calculations will be for molecular weight and band matching.
After the initial curve is applied the software will attempt to mimic the curvature of the
surrounding curves when new curves are applied. This results in less editing of the
additional curves.
Band Matching, Similarity Matrix, and Dendrograms
AlphaEaseFC provides features for matching bands between lanes. The resultant data
can then be used to generate similarity matrices and/or dendrograms. Band matching
features are accessible under the Analysis menu within 1D-Multi’s AutoLane feature.
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Prerequisites for Band Matching
Prior to performing band matching, a number of steps must be followed.
1. Lanes and Bands must be detected and edited through the AutoLane feature.
2. If Molecular Weights are to be calculated, molecular weight markers must be
loaded prior to band matching. Refer to the section within 1D-Multi on loading
molecular weight markers.
3. (Optional) A new Rf curve tool has been added to AlphaEaseFC. This tool allows
the user to adjust the software’s calculations for M.W., Adj. Rf, and Band
Matching by drawing the shape of the gel smile or curvature. Applying the Rf
Curve tool will aid in the accuracy of automatically matching bands and will
result in less user edits afterwards. Refer to the section on Rf Curve tool for
further instructions.
Matching Bands
Band Matching dialog window is accessible through the Analysis menu on AutoLane’s
Profile and Data window. Select Band Matching from the Analysis menu.
Band Matching Dialog window
Automatic versus Manual Band Matching
Functionality is provided for both Automatic and Manual band matching. Each will be
explained in detail. Note that these are not exclusive. After Automatic Band Matching
has been performed the user is able to use the Manual matching features to edit or correct
the automatic findings.
Automatic Band Matching
Matching Metric
Select either Adjusted Rf Matching or Generic Rf Matching as the matching metric.
Adjusted Rf Matching: When Adjusted Rf Matching is selected the software
will match bands based on the data values in the Adjusted Rf column of the
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Profile and Data window. These values result from the gel smile/curvature rather
than the absolute vertical Rf value. Adjusted Rf is calculated based on the
addition of M.W. markers and/or the Rf Curve lines which serve to correct the
Generic Rf values for gel smiling.
Generic Rf Matching: When Generic Rf Matching is selected the software will
match bands based on the data values in the Rf column of the Profile and Data
window. These values are the relative Rf calculated vertically where the origin of
the lane is set to zero and the lane front is set to 1. Gel smiling or curvature is not
adjusted for in this selection.
Matching Reference
Select a lane to serve as the matching reference. It is advised that you choose a lane that
either contains most of the bands of interest or spans the range of bands of interest while
also containing many of the bands of interest. This will reduce the amount of effort
required for post match edits.
Matching Tolerance
Enter a value to be used as the matching tolerance. The tolerance is converted into the
amount of displacement two bands may have and still be matched by the software. The
larger the tolerance value the larger the range the software will use for matching. The
valid range is 0-10%. A value of 1-5% typically works best. A lower percentage works
well for tightly spaced bands.
Auto Match
After selecting a matching metric, reference, and tolerance click the Auto Match button
for the software to perform auto matching. When matching has been completed the
Display Results and Generate Dendrogram buttons will become active. Refer to the
appropriate sections below for a description of Similarity Results and Dendrogram
creation.
Editing Match Results
Following Automatic band matching the user may need to manually edit or correct some
matches. The tools under Manual Matching can be used for this purpose. Refer to the
section below on Manual Matching for a description of each tool.
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Manual Band Matching
Band Matching Dialog window
Manual band matching tools are useful for quickly matching lanes with only a few bands
or for manual edits and corrections to Automatic Band Matching results.
New Band Type
Select the New Band Type tool by clicking the New Band Type button. A Band Type is
a band with a unique Rf. or Adj. Rf. Value. Each band within a lane will be part of a
band type and no two bands within a lane can be of the same band type.
After selecting the New Band Type tool, click on a band to draw a band type line. Repeat
this process of selecting the tool and clicking a band until a band for each unique band
type has been selected.
Deleting a Band Type
To delete a band type, select the Delete Band Type button and click on a band type line.
Adding Bands to a Band Type
Select the Plus Band tool by clicking the Plus Band button. Click on a band type line to
select it, the line will be highlighted in yellow. Now click on a band that belongs to this
band type. Repeat this process for all bands belonging to this band type. Then repeat the
process for each band type until all bands have been identified as belonging to a band
type.
Removing Bands from a Band Type
Select the Minus Band tool by clicking on the Minus Band button. Click on a band type
line to select it, the line will be highlighted in yellow. Now click on the band that you
would like to remove from the selected band type.
Undo/Redo
The Undo and Redo buttons will undo and redo the last action performed respectively.
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Band Matching Results
Display Results
After bands have been matched a table is generated with the matching results. Click the
Display Results button to view the matching results.
Band Matching Results window displaying the similarity matrix
Viewing Result Tables
The match results can be viewed in one of four configurations. Select the configuration
desired under the View menu. In each view Band Type is identified in the left most
column. Band numbers appear in their Rf. Position within each lane. Lane numbers are
identified in the first row. The file location, matching metric, matching reference, and
matching tolerance are displayed below the tables.
Mixed Table: This display will show you both matched and unmatched bands in
one table.
Separate Tables: This display will show you matched and unmatched bands in
separate tables.
Matched Table: This display will show you only the results of matched bands.
Unmatched Table: This display will show you only the results of unmatched
bands.
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Exporting and Printing Band Matching Results
Print and Export are selectable under the File menu. Select Print to send the report to a
local or network printer. Select Export to export the results to the clipboard or to file.
When exporting to a file there are two file types that can be saved, standard text file
(*.txt) or a comma separated value file (*.csv). When exporting to Excel, use the *.csv
file type to skip the Excel import wizard or use export to clipboard followed by Paste in
Excel.
Dendrogram and Similarity Matrix Generation
After bands have been matched dendrograms and similarity matrices can be generated
from the data. Click the Generate Dendrograms button to view these.
Dendrogram window where Dendrograms are generated and Similarity Matrices are
accessed.
Similarity Matrix
Select a method from the Distance Matrix pull down for calculating similarity. The
choices are Dice Coefficient, Jaccard Coefficient, Pearson Coefficient, and Frequency
Similarity. These are standard statistical algorithms, references can be found in most
statistical text books.
Select the Display Matrix option from the Options menu or click the Display Matrix
button
to display the Similarity Matrix.
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Similarity Matrix
The similarity matrix is a graphical display of the similarity between lanes.
Exporting and Printing the Similarity Matrix
Print and Export are selectable under the File menu. Select Print to send the report to a
local or network printer. Select Export to export the results to the clipboard or to file.
When exporting to a file there are two file types that can be saved, standard text file
(*.txt) or a comma separated value file (*.csv). When exporting to Excel, use the *.csv
file type to skip the Excel import wizard or use export to clipboard followed by Paste in
Excel.
Dendrograms
The dendrogram window is accessed by clicking the Generate Dendrograms button in the
Band Matching dialog.
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Distance Matrix
Select a method from the Distance Matrix pull down for calculating similarity. The
choices are Dice Coefficient, Jaccard Coefficient, Pearson Coefficient, and Frequency
Similarity. These are standard statistical algorithms, references can be found in most
statistical text books.
Cluster Method
Select a method for calculating the clustering from the Cluster Method pull down. The
choices are Neighbor Joining, UPGMA, WPGMA, Single Linkage, Complete Linkage,
Ward, Median, and Centroid. . These are standard statistical algorithms, references can
be found in most statistical text books.
Clusters
Select the number of clusters you would like displayed in the dendrogram. The values
are 1 to maximum number of lanes in the image. This option is disabled when Neighbor
Joining is chosen for the cluster method since the method determines the number of
clusters.
OutGroup
When Neighbor Joining is chosen for the cluster method the OutGroup option is enabled
allowing the user the ability to set the number of Out Groups to display.
Exporting and Printing the Dendrogram
Print and Export are selectable under the File menu. Select Print to send the report to a
local or network printer. Select Export to export the results to the clipboard or to file.
When exporting to a file there are two file types that can be saved, standard text file
(*.txt) or a comma separated value file (*.csv). When exporting to Excel, use the *.csv
file type to skip the Excel import wizard or use export to clipboard followed by Paste in
Excel.
Display Type
Under the View menu the user may select to view the dendrogram in the Phylogram or
Cladogram format.
Collapse/Expand
The Collapse/Expand tool allows the user to collapse or expand the dendrogram by
clicking on a red intersection marker.
Selection Tool
The selection tool allows the user to mouse out an area of interest within the dendrogram.
When the mouse is released you will be given the choice to Print, View, or Export the
selected region.
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Grab Tool
The grab tool allows the user to navigate the entire dendrogram in a zoomed display by
clicking and dragging to window.
Zoom In/Out Tools
The zoom in and out tools allow zoom control over the dendrogram window.
Fit to Window Tool
Selecting this button will fit the dendrogram to the current window size.
5.4 Spot Density Tools
In the ToolBox, Analysis Tools, a tab labeled SPOT DENSO, opens a set of tools with
which the density of bands, spots or other objects can be measured. A two dimensional
area of interest (or Object) is created and the density is obtained through the
corresponding pixel intensity values designated as IDV or Integrated Density Value.
Spot Densitometry Tools
Creating an Object Area of Interest
Object Boxes:
An area of interest can be created in several ways. The user can manually draw an area
of interest through the three OBJECT buttons. Objects can be enclosed with a box
(rectangle), ellipse, or freehand drawing. Select the one that most closely corresponds to
the shape of the objects on the image.
To draw a rectangle or ellipse, click on the button labeled with a box (or a circle) beneath
the OBJECT header in the toolbox. The cursor automatically changes to a "+" when it is
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in the image area, indicating that AlphaEaseFC is in “drawing” mode. Move the "+" to
the corner of the object to be measured, click the left mouse button, move the cursor, and
release the mouse button when the box (or circle) surrounds the object.
Hint: to draw a perfect circle around a portion of an image, first visualize a square
surrounding the area of interest. Position the mouse in the upper left hand corner of the
square. Click and drag the mouse down across the area of interest at a 45° angle until the
circle encloses the area of interest.
To draw a freehand object, select the freehand icon; the mouse will change to a pencil.
Draw an object of the desired size and shape. When the mouse is released, the start and
end points of the object will be connected.
Once the mouse is released, the cursor changes to an arrow (indicating that AlphaEaseFC
is in “edit” mode), and the object is shown in gray with handles around it. The object can
now be resized using the handles or repositioned by clicking within the boundaries and
dragging to a new location.
To draw another object, return AlphaEaseFC to “drawing” mode by clicking the
right mouse button.
If a box or ellipse is large and includes significant background area, the corresponding
density value may be large. The higher the background, the greater its contribution to the
total of pixel values in that object. Therefore, objects should be drawn so that they fully
enclose areas of interest, but do not include an excessive number of background pixels or
pixels from neighboring regions:
Object too Large
Object too Close to Band
Recommended Object Placement
Hint: Keeping the data window open can reduce the speed at which objects are drawn
and manipulated on the screen. Therefore, it may be preferable to hide the data window
until all objects and backgrounds are drawn and in place.
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Magic Wand and AutoSpot
These two selections are automated detection features designed to recognize sample in an
image and draw Object boxes around it. They are found under the Auto Detect heading
in the main Spot Denso. Tab. Once an object is created the dimensions can be altered
and the background subtracted similar to manually drawn objects.
AutoDetect
Magic Wand:
Selecting Magic Wand will activate a wand like symbol and the following data table:
Magic Wand Parameter Window
The tip of the wand should be centrally positioned over the sample spot on the image and
then simply click the mouse. The software will use either an “edge detection” algorithm
to trace an area of interest around the spot or draw a box around the sample. A right
mouse click will reactivate the wand icon for another selection.
Magic Wand Sensitivity
The Magic Wand Sensitivity slide bar will alter the parameter for how much of the spot
will be detected. The slide bar ranges from 0 to 100. The smaller the number the less of
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the spot the software will define. The greater the sensitivity number the more of the
object the software will find.
**HINT: Selecting a brighter pixel within the band (or spot) will have magic wand draw
a tighter area of interest. Correspondingly, a less intense pixel will draw a larger
perimeter around the selected spot**
Spot Type
Under the Spot Type heading the Bright Spots selection should be checked if the image
contains bright spots on a dark background (e.g. ethidium bromide stained fluorescent
gels and chemiluminescent blots). The Dark Spots selection should be made when the
sample contains dark sample on a light background (film, coomassie blue protein gels
etc..). The software should automatically determine this selection, but the user may
have to override it if the software incorrectly evaluates an image. Remember as in all
portions of AlphaEaseFC software if the image has been reversed (negative image)using
the Reverse selection on the Contrast Adjustment window the Dark Spot selection
should not be made. Reverse is a visual alteration only and does not effect the original
image capture data. (EG a chemiluminescent blot is captured using the Reverse mode in
order for it to appear as film, the correct selection is still Bright Spots).
Outline Type
Border Outline will use the edge detection methods to determine the spot area. The Box
Outline will draw a box shape around the sample usually including a significant portion
of background. User preference and image particulars will determine which outline type
is best.
Previous Location
Previous Location will automatically select the spot on the image last selected for magic
wand and apply any changes made for sensitivity. This feature is designed to quickly
evaluate how the different sensitivity numbers will affect the drawn area using the same
selected point in a spot. The X,Y coordinates are given for the previous spot as well.
Exit
Exit will remove the Magic Wand Parameter Window.
Auto Spot:
Auto Spot is a feature designed to find multiple spots within a region of interest. It is
accessed through AutoSpot under Auto Detect in the Spot Denso tab. Once it is selected
the following tab will appear and the cursor will be ready to draw an area of interest.
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Auto Spot
Area of Interest
After selecting AutoSpot an area should be drawn on the image by clicking and draging
the mouse. The smaller and more defined the Area of Interest is, the better the resulting
data. The area can be manipulated using the manipulation tabs at the edge of the red
box.
Options
The Options selection allows either a box outline to be drawn around the spots or a
border outline. The box will include more of a background in the drawn area than the
border outline. User preference and image particulars will determine which outline type
is best. The sensitivity can also be adjusted by sliding the bars for normal spots (<98%
saturation) and for saturated spots (>98% saturation).
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Auto Spot Options
Bright Spot vs Dark Spot
The Bright Spots selection should be checked if the image contains bright spots on a
dark background (eg ethidium bromide stained fluorescent gels and chemiluminescent
blots). The Dark Spots selection should be made when the sample contains dark sample
on a light background (film, commassie blue protein gels etc..). The software should
automatically determine this selection, but the user may have to override it if the
software incorrectly evaluates an image. Remember as in all portions of AlphaEaseFC
software if the image has been reversed (negative image)using the Reverse selection on
the Contrast Adjustment window the Dark Spot selection should not be made. Reverse is
a visual alteration only and does not effect the original image capture data. (EG if a
chemiluminescent blot is captured using the Reverse mode in order for it to appear as
film, the correct selection is still Bright Spots).
Find Spots
The Find Spot button is selected once the correct area of interest is drawn and the Bright
Spot/Dark Spot selection is correctly made. A green outline will be drawn around the
detected spots.
Background Threshold
The background threshold slide bar will adjust the criteria used for finding spots. It is on
a scale of 0 to 100% saturation. The sliding bar maps the dynamic range of the camera.
By calculating the fringe pixels in the image or ROI, the initial threshold value and
suggested lower (or upper) bound value are calculated and shown on the sliding bar. The
user can always override the threshold value by moving the sliding bar or typing in the
counter box.
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Target Size
The user can input the minimum and maximum area in pixels of the spots or bands of the
desired targets. The default values are 1 pixel minimum and no limit for maximum
pixels.
Get Data
Get Data is selected once a satisfactory spot outline is achieved. This will convert all
drawn objects into standard Spot Densitometry objects with associated density numbers.
Manipulating Objects:
Selecting Objects
To select an object, click on it with the mouse. “Handles” will appear at its corners.
Non-Selected and Selected Objects
To select a second object instead of the first, click on the desired object.
To select more than one object at a time, drag the mouse around all of the objects of
interest. Note: an object must be completely surrounded by the mouse operation in order
to be selected.
To select more than one object where it is not feasible to drag the mouse around objects,
hold the <shift> key and click on each object to be selected.
To de-select an object, click the left mouse button outside of the selected object. The
handles disappear, indicating that the object is no longer selected.
Copying Objects
To draw boxes or ellipses enclosing the same number of data points, use the COPY
function.
First, draw or select an object of the desired shape and size as described above. Next,
click on the COPY button in the toolbox. A duplicate of the selected object will appear
on the screen. This object can then be moved to the desired position.
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To make multiple copies of an object, continue to click on the COPY button until the
desired number of copies is displayed.
Moving Objects
An object can be moved to fine-tune its position simply by clicking on it, holding down
the left mouse button and dragging it to the desired location.
Deleting Objects
To remove an object or set of objects, select the object(s). Then, click on the DELETE
button in the toolbox. All the selected objects are removed from the image window and
their associated data is cleared from the data window.
Spot Density Toolbox
To remove all objects from the image window at once, click on the CLEAR button.
Saving and Loading Objects
To save the size and position of objects for future analyses, select Save Spot Denso
Overlay from the Overlay pulldown menu. A dialog box will open. Enter a file name
and path. AlphaEaseFC will automatically add the extension .SPO to the file.
Saving and Loading Object Templates in Spot Denso
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To retrieve the size and position of objects, select Load Spot Denso Overlay from the
Overlay pulldown menu. From the dialog box, select the file of interest. The objects
will be displayed on the current image.
Object Libraries
AlphaEaseFC Software contains a library of Spot Denso objects that can be accessed
through the Load Spot Denso Overlay function described above:
32SLOT.SPO
48CIRCLE.SPO
6CIRCLE.SPO
96CIRCLE.SPO
32 rectangles in 4 rows of 8
48 circles in 6 rows of 8
6 circles in 2 rows of 3
96 circles in 8 rows of 12
The objects in these overlays can be repositioned, resized, copied and deleted as needed.
Spot Density Data Window
If this window obscures a region of interest, resize and/or move it following Windows®
conventions. Alternatively, close the data window by clicking in the check box next to
the HIDE DATA heading in the toolbox. An “X” appears in the box, indicating that this
option is selected. To re-display the data window, click in the check box again.
Spot Density Measurements:
As objects are drawn, their density data is automatically calculated and displayed in a
data window. Any time an object is drawn or detected, the data in the window are
updated.
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Example Of A Spot Density Data Window
If this window obscures a region of interest, resize and/or move it following Windows®
conventions. Alternatively, close the data window by clicking in the checkbox next to
the HIDE DATA heading in the toolbox. An “X” appears in the box, indicating that this
option is selected. To re-display the data window, click in the checkbox again.
Data Definitions
# is the number assigned to each object on the image in the order in which they were
drawn. This object number is also shown in the corner of the object.
IDV is the sum of all the pixel values after background correction:
IDV = ∑ (each pixel value - BACK)
% is the percentage that each box, ellipse, or freehand drawing contributes to the total
density measured thus far, taking background correction into consideration. The sum of
the values in this column will be 100.
AREA is the size (in pixels) of the region enclosed by the box, ellipse, or freehand
drawing.
AVG is the average value (after background correction) of the pixels enclosed.
AVG = IDV ÷ AREA
BACK is the background value that will be subtracted from all the pixels in the object.
(See Calculating Background Values below for more information.)
Inverting the Data
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The INVERT function reverses the gray scale assignments so that 0 corresponds to white
and 4,095 corresponds to black.
If the image has dark bands and light background, then INVERT should be selected
by placing an “X” in its box. If the image has light bands and dark background, the
INVERT option should not be activated.
Unlike the REVERSE button described in Chapter 2, this function does not alter the
appearance of the image.
Calculating Background Values:
Background subtraction is an important part of image densitometry analysis. There are
three background subtraction options in the Spot Density tools.
IDV = ∑ (each pixel value - BACK)
No Background
If no background calculation method has been selected, the background value in the data
window (BACK) is reported as zero (0). Therefore, the object’s integrated density value
will be equal to the sum of all the pixel values within the box, ellipse, or freehand
drawing. Recommendation: No Background or Manual Background is suggested for
AutoSpot, Magic Wand (only the border outlines though) or any object where little if any
background is included in the object area of interest.
Automatic Background
When the AUTO BACKGRD function is active (an “X” appears in the checkbox),
AlphaEaseFC determines the average of the 10 lowest pixel values in each individual
object and assigns that value to BACK. This option is useful if the image has regions
with different background levels, because the background values (BACK) will be unique
for each object.
Spot Denso Toolbox Showing Auto Background Active
Note: If AUTO BACKGROUND is active, it will override the manual background
option (described below).
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Manual Background
Using this option, different region(s) of the image representative of different background
densities can be specified. Further, the user can specify exactly which objects of interest
should correspond to which background objects.
To manually specify the background, use the buttons beneath the BACKGROUND
heading in the Spot Denso toolbox to draw a box (or ellipse or freehand drawing)
around an area representative of background density. If the background varies across an
image, draw several background objects in order to represent each of the various
background levels.
Next, specify the object(s) from which each background density should be subtracted. To
associate a background with an object(s), select the object(s) and the background as
described in Selecting Objects above. When all are selected, click on the LINK
BCKGRD button in the Spot Denso toolbox. All the objects will assume the color of
the background object, indicating that they are associated with each other.
Using Manual Background to Assign Different Background Values to Different Objects:
Objects1-5 are linked to B1; 6-7 to B2; 8-9 to B3
In the Spot Density data window, these objects now show a non-zero background
density value in the BACK column.
To disassociate an object from its background, select the object and click on the UNLINK
BCKGRD button. The object reverts to its original color, indicating that it is no longer
associated with any background box or ellipse. The object's value in the data window
changes and its entry in the BACK column returns to zero.
Note: If AUTO BACKGROUND is active, manual background settings will be
overridden.
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Calibration Curves for Quantitative PCR:
The button in the Spot Denso toolbox labeled STD CURVE opens a set of tools that
create a calibration curve for applications such as quantitative PCR.
The calibration curve functions allow quantitation of the bands on a gel based on a set of
standards. A minimum of two standard bands must be input, but the accuracy of the
calibration curve increases as the number of standard bands and their range of values
increase.
Defining the Bands as Objects
Before generating a standard curve, define the bands using the object drawing tools in the
Spot Denso toolbox. As described in Drawing Objects above, the size of an object can
influence the integrated density value. Therefore, we recommend using the same sized
box, ellipse or freehand drawing when defining a standard curve. (See Copying Objects
above for instructions.)
Specifying the Quantitation Units
Once the objects are defined, click on the STD CURVE button. The Standard Curve
Toolbox will appear. Enter the units in which the results should be reported (e.g. ng, ul,
pg, %).
The Standard Curve Toolbox
Press the <Enter> key on the keyboard after typing the units. This step is very
important. If the Enter key is not hit, an error message will appear:
Designating the Standard Bands
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Click on one of the bands whose value is known. In the dialog box displayed, enter the
value for the band, using either the keyboard or the numeric keypad in the dialog box.
When the entry is correct click on the OK button. The band number changes from white
to green, indicating that it is now a standard.
To enter the next value, click on another band. The dialog box will open again and will
show an estimated value (based on the object’s IDV value and on the standard value
already entered). Click OK to accept this value, or enter a value.
Entering the Value for a Standard Band
Once the second value has been entered, a curve is displayed. The points corresponding
to the standard bands are labeled in yellow. Points for the unknown objects on the image
are displayed on the standard curve based on their integrated density values. These are
labeled in white.
Standard Curve
Enter values for each band whose amount is known. As more standard points are added,
the calculated values of the unknown points may change.
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To remove a band from the set of standards, click on it again. The band number changes
from green back to white, indicating that it is no longer a standard. To de-select all the
standard points at once, click on the CLEAR STD PTS button in the toolbox.
To change the value of a standard band, click on it twice. In the dialog box, the estimated
value for that band is displayed. Accept this value by clicking OK, or enter a new value.
Displaying the Curve
If the box displaying the standard curve obscures a part of the image, it can be resized
using Windows® operating system functions. It can be hidden from view by clicking the
HIDE CURVE checkbox in the Standard Curve toolbox.
Quantitation Values of Unknown Bands
As the values for the standard bands have been entered, the quantitation values of the
unknown bands are automatically calculated. To see the calculated values of the
unknowns, click on the EXIT button in the standard curve toolbox. This returns to the
Spot Denso tools and data box.
Note: the graph is based on a Smoothed Cubic Spline fit. To use other curve-fitting
methods, output the data table as an ASCII file and open it in any statistical analysis
package. (See Outputting Quantitation Data below.)
Spot Denso Data Box
The third column in the data box contains values for the standards (entered by the user),
and the values for the unknown bands (calculated based on the curve). The heading of
this column reflects the units entered as in Specifying the Quantitation Units above.
An "n" next to the object number indicates that the objects are unknowns (or nonstandards) whose value has been interpolated. An “a” means that the object lies outside
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Chapter 5: Analysis Tools
of the curve, and its value has been approximated through extrapolation. Standards have
an “s” next to the object number, and are highlighted in green to differentiate them from
unknown bands.
Outputting Quantitation Data
The OUTPUT tool provides a way to save the data to a printer, to the clipboard, or to an
ASCII file. This ASCII file can then be imported into a spreadsheet for further analysis
and/or graphing.
Click on the appropriate box to specify where the data should be sent. To create a file,
enter a name for it in the text box.
To send the data, click on the OK button.
To dismiss the dialog box without sending the data, click the CANCEL button.
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5.5 Object Counting: Auto Count and Manual Count
The Object Count tools in the Tool Box, Analysis Tools make it easy to count the
number of objects on an image, such as colonies on a Petri dish or viral plaques.
Click on the button under the Tool Box, Analysis Tools heading, then, click either the
MANUAL COUNT or the AUTO COUNT button. The following sets of tools will be
displayed in the lower left of the screen.
Manual Count Tools
Auto Count Tools
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Both MANUAL COUNT and AUTO COUNT allow two different types of objects (for
example, blue and white colonies on a Petri dish) to be counted. Both counts are initially
set to zero (0).
Sample with Two Types of Objects
When two types of objects are counted, the objects are highlighted in different colors.
They can also be marked on the image using a "+" or an “X”.
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Manual Count
Some samples are extremely difficult to count because of their shape, size, or lack of
intensity variation from the background. To accurately count these samples, we have
developed the manual counting feature within our software. To manually count the
objects in an image, click on MANUAL COUNT in Tool Box, Analysis Tools. You
may use either a green x or a red +. If you are only counting one type of sample, you
may simply use the x which is the default to begin counting in the software.
Manual Count Screen
Placing Markers to Count
Point the cursor at an object to be counted and click the left mouse button. An “x” is
placed over the object, ensuring that the same object will not be mistakenly counted
twice. In the toolbox, the number in the COUNT box automatically increases by 1.
Click on all of the objects of this type or color to be counted.
To count objects of another type or color (such as white vs. blue colonies in a β-gal
assay), click “+” button and click on each object as above.
Section of an Image After Manual Counting
Corresponding Data; “X” is Currently Selected
Erasing and Hiding Count Markers
To erase a marker that has been manually placed, click on the marker on the image. It
will disappear and the count will be reduced by one. If you have “x” selected, then only
the “x” count markers can be erased. Likewise, if the “+” is selected, then only the “+”
count markers can be erased.
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The Sensitivity indicator determines how close the cursor must be to a marker in order to
delete it. Higher numbers allow the user to click further away from the marker to delete
it; however, if Sensitivity is set too high, it will be impossible to place markers on spots
that are close together.
Hiding Your Count Markers from the Screen
The software will record all counts as you continue clicking on your objects. If the
counting becomes confusing, you may click on the HIDE button to hide off of the x’s and
+’s that were used to count your objects on the screen. If you wish to make a print of
your image hiding the count, make sure that the HIDE button has been pressed to high
your count markers. You can then go to Tool Box, Enhancement Tools, Annotations,
and label the image with the appropriate. Click on the PRINT button to obtain a
hardcopy.
Erasing the Count Markers and Data
Once you have finished counting your objects and have obtained the data you need, you
may clear the count by clicking on the ZERO button. This will erase all of the count
markers from the screen and zero the count data to allow you to begin counting again
with the same image or another image that you have acquired.
Automatic Count
Follow these three steps to perform an automatic object count:
1. Define and Position Area(s) of Interest
There are three drawing tools with which areas of interest can be designated. Click on the
desired AOI (Area of Interest) button in the toolbox to define areas on the image
containing the objects to be counted.
AutoCount Tools
Circles: This is the most appropriate choice for counting colonies on a Petri dish. After
clicking on the button in the toolbox labeled with a circle, move the cursor into the image
area to the edge of the Petri dish. Click the left mouse button and move the cursor to
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open the circle. When the circle corresponds to the perimeter of the Petri dish, release the
mouse. The circle has “handles” around it, and can be moved or re-sized at this point.
Hint: to draw a perfect circle around a portion of an image, first
visualize a square surrounding the area of interest. Position the mouse
in the upper left hand corner of the square. Click and drag the mouse
down across the area of interest at a 45° angle until the circle encloses
the area of interest.
Rectangles: After clicking on the button in the toolbox labeled with a square, move to
one of the four corners of the region to be enclosed. Click the left mouse button and
move the cursor to the corner diagonally opposite. Note the box that opens as the cursor
moves. Release the left mouse button when the box has reached the desired size. The
rectangle has “handles” around it, and can be moved or re-sized at this point.
Freehand Drawings: To draw a freehand object, select the freehand icon; the mouse will
change to a pencil. Draw an object of the desired size and shape. When the mouse is
released, the start and end points of the object will be connected.
Manipulating Areas of Interest: Areas of interest can be moved, copied and deleted.
To perform any of these functions, an area must first be selected by clicking on it or
dragging the cursor around it. Its color changes to gray, indicating that it is active. More
than one area of interest can be selected at any given time.
To move an area of interest click on the selected area. While holding down the left
mouse button, drag the area to the desired location.
To delete an area of interest click on the cut button in the toolbox (designated by a pair of
scissors). The selected area of interest is removed and any other areas of interest are
renumbered accordingly.
To copy a selected area of interest, click on the copy button (found next to the cut
button). A second copy of the area of interest appears overlapping the first one. Click
and drag the copy to the desired location.
2. Set the Density Threshold(s)
The objects counted by the automatic counting routine are based on the difference in the
gray levels of the objects as compared to the background (e.g., the colonies on the petri
dish are either darker or lighter than the surrounding area). The density thresholds define
the gray levels that are recognized by the counting routine.
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To set the density threshold, click and drag the sliders. As the sliders are moved, the
regions of the image that fall within the gray scale range are highlighted in the image
area. Adjust the slider positions until the objects to be counted are highlighted. The
numbers next to the Min and Max settings change to reflect the positions of the sliders.
These numbers represent the minimum and maximum gray scale values that are currently
being detected. Any object whose gray level falls between these two numbers will be
counted.
If there are two sets of objects to count, click on the second object count button (next to
the COUNT button) and adjust the density threshold so the second set of objects are
highlighted.
3. Count the Objects
When the density threshold settings and size settings are satisfactory, click on the
COUNT button. If two types of objects are to be counted, click the second object count
button and click COUNT again. The counts are shown for each area of interest and the
totals are given in an object count display window on the image.
Auto Count Sample Results for an AOI
Editing Tools
After the objects have been automatically counted, AlphaEaseFC will automatically open
the Edit Tools functions. If editing is necessary, these tools manually override decisions
made by the automatic counter.
Auto Count Editing Tools
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Displaying Spots
Spots are displayed as red (or green) numbers on the image. These can be changed to
symbols (“+” or “x”) by holding the <shift> key and clicking the right mouse button.
Repeat to return to numbers.
Spots can be hidden from view by checking the Hide Spots checkbox.
Specify the Size Range of the Objects
If the image has objects of different sizes but only those in a certain size range are of
interest, use the Area Controls.
Specify the size range by adjusting the minimum and maximum diameter settings. The
numbers below the Min. Area and Max. Area headings indicate the minimum and
maximum diameter settings in pixels. Any object whose diameter falls between these
two numbers will be counted.
As these number are changed, objects will be added to (or deleted from) the display, and
the Count windows will be updated.
Using the ADD SPOT Tool
Occasionally, the automatic counting function may fail to count an object on the image.
This could occur for a variety of reasons, including inappropriate Density and Size
Threshold parameter settings.
Objects can be added to the total count numbers using the Add Spot button. Click on the
appropriate count box (red or green). Next, click on the Add Spot button. Point the
cursor at the object to be added and click the left mouse button. The object will be
highlighted and the count will automatically increase.
Results of AutoCount After Manual Addition of Three Spots
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Chapter 5: Analysis Tools
To add a second object, click on the right mouse button to re-enter “add” mode, then
click on the desired object with the left mouse button.
Using the Erase Spot Tool
This function removes any extra spots that were counted either automatically or
manually. For example, if a portion of an AOI has high background or other noise, a
number of objects may erroneously be included in the count. Draw a box around the
object or set of objects. Objects will be displayed with a white background to indicate
that they are selected. Clicking Erase Spot deletes all selected objects at once and
automatically reduces the total count information.
Spot Count Data
When AphaEaseFC opens, the Object Count data box is hidden. To display spot count
data, click the checkbox to deselect Hide Data. The following data window will appear:
Auto Count Data Window Showing AOI Summary Data
This window shows the summary data for the area(s) of interest (AOIs). This includes
the threshold values that were set for each count type, the number of objects found for
each count type, and the total pixels in all of the spots.
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To see specific details on each spot, select Spot Details from the View menu. The
following information will appear:
Selecting the Auto Count Data Window to Show Individual Spot Details
The data table gives the individual spot number, the AOI in which it was counted, its
coordinates, the integrated density value (IDV) for each spot, the area (number of pixels)
for each spot, and the % contribution to the total. Note: manually-added spots show
areas of 1 pixel.
Outputting Auto Count Data
The Output function in the Auto Count data table outputs data as a hard copy or as an
ASCII text file (which can then be imported into a spreadsheet for further analysis and/or
graphing).
To create a file, click in the box next to the File prompt and enter a name for it in the text
box. To send the data to a printer, click on the Video Printer or Default Printer buttons.
To send data to the clipboard for importing to another program, click on the Clipboard
button.
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Chapter 5: Analysis Tools
When the appropriate output source has been selected, click on the OK button to send the
data.
Saving and Loading AutoCount Parameters
To save the size and position of objects for future analyses, select Save Auto Count
Overlay from the Overlay pulldown menu. A dialog box will open. Enter a file name
and path. AphaEaseFC™ will automatically add the extension .CNT to the file.
Saving and Loading Object Templates in AutoCount
To retrieve the size and position of objects, select Load Auto Count Overlay from the
Overlay pulldown menu. From the dialog box, select the file of interest. The objects
will be displayed on the current image.
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5.6 The Scoring Function
The Scoring function is designed for gene expression applications to check for presence
or absence of specific samples. The scoring function can be used for a quick manual
identification of several different sample types. The software allows for up to three
different scores on a gel, blot, or microtiter plate.
To score an image, click on the SCORING button in Toolbox 4. Define the appropriate
number of rows and columns of your image by using the appropriate controls. You can
also define the amount of spacing between your rows and columns to compensate for any
variations between lanes or wells.
Scoring controls
Once you have selected the number of rows and columns to be displayed, you may adjust
the template to fit your image. Use the left button on the mouse to click, hold, and drag
the outside borders of the template so they frame the lanes or wells to be scored.
Clicking, holding, and dragging on or within any border moves the entire template.
Clicking on the blue corners surrounding the template resizes it.
Scoring image with template positioned
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Chapter 5: Analysis Tools
Scoring the Sample
Three different scoring options are available: score with a positive, negative, or positive /
negative. The software will display an “X” if you have a positive sample or three “–“
signs arranged in a vertical fashion if you score with a negative. Nothing will appear if
you score with a positive/negative. You may use the right and left mouse buttons to
determine different scores. The right mouse button will score the sample with an “X”.
The left mouse button will score the sample with three “-“ signs vertically arranged.
Scoring for positives (+), negatives (-), and positive / negative (nothing)
For faster scoring, you may look at the entire image and visually determine whether the
samples are primarily positive, negative, or positive / negative. By clicking on the All + ,
All -, or All +/- boxes, all of the samples on the image will have either an “X”, three “-”,
or nothing depending on the button you clicked.
Image after All + button pressed
Image after All + button pressed
and individual sample scoring -
Output and scoring options
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Outputting Scoring Results
Once you have completed scoring your sample, you may output the results. The results
can either be printed directly to a printer, or you may export the results as ASCII data for
direct importation into Excel or other spreadsheet programs
Sending a Screen Image to a Printer
Click on the PRINT button on the software interface to printout your image with the
scoring marks.
Sending Data to a Printer
To send the data directly to the Video Printer or Default Printer, click on the OUTPUT
button and click in the circle next to appropriate printer.
Clicking on the OK button will send the data directly to the printer attached to your
imaging system.
Sending Data to a Spreadsheet Program
To send the data results to Excel or other spreadsheet programs, click on the OUTPUT
button, click on the clipboard option, then click on OK. If you have Excel or another
spreadsheet program loaded on the system and running in the background, you can
simply press the ALT and TAB keys simultaneously to move into the spreadsheet
program. You can then import the data directly to the desired spreadsheet from
clipboard.
Note: The spreadsheet program must be installed on the computer in order to
output the data to that program.
Sending Data to a File
If you would like to take the data from the system and import it into another computer,
the data can be saved to a diskette or network which will allow you to open the data file
on a separate workstation connected to the network.
Click on the OUTPUT button and then on the File option. Specify the path and file name
to send the data file. The data is saved as an ASCII file and can be imported into most
spreadsheet programs. ASCII is a very common file format output option for numerical
data.
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Chapter 5: Analysis Tools
5.7 The Ruler Function
Introduction
The Ruler function allows the user to create a scale based on a standard and to measure
distances from a set origin to a chosen location.
The Ruler Tools and Ruler Toolbox
Using the Ruler Function
To access the Ruler function, click on ToolBox, Analysis Tools and then on RULER.
A line with a box at each end and a circle with a cross in it will appear on the screen.
Before any measurements can be obtained, a standard scale must be established. The
scale that is created will serve as the standard for all measurements. Therefore, it is
advisable to draw the scale line according to some standard measurement within the
image (such as a ruler).
Using the mouse, click and drag one end of the line and then the other end into position.
Once the line is in position, click in the SCALE LENGTH box and type the length of the
standard. Press <enter> to save this value.
Distance is measured from the origin (designated by the circle with a cross in it) to the
mouse location. Place the origin marker appropriately, and then move the mouse. The
distance will be constantly updated in the DISTANCE box.
To hide the scale and origin, click on the HIDE ORIGIN SCALE checkbox.
Cartesian Coordinates
The Ruler function can also be used to create a Cartesian coordinate system. The origin
icon has default values (0.000, 0.000). These can be changed by clicking on the
ORIGIN box, typing in new values, and clicking <enter>.
Once the origin is placed on the screen in its desired location, the relative coordinates of
the mouse at any location are shown at the right-hand side of the screen. In the example
above, the cursor is 0.747 inches to the right of the origin and 1.071 inches below. To
hide the coordinates, click on the HIDE COORDINATES checkbox.
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BLANK PAGE
5-90
Appendix A
Appendix A: Opening
AlphaEaseFC™ Files
in Other Software Programs
Alpha Innotech-generated files have been tested in the software packages below. For successful
imports, the command line is given.
Programs for the Macintosh® operating system were tested on a PowerMac® 8100/100AV.
Results may vary for different software versions and/or hardware configurations.
Adobe Photoshop 2.51 LE (Mac)
Adobe Photoshop 3.0 (Mac)
Canvas 3.5 (Mac)
Microsoft Word 6.0 (Mac)
Microsoft Word 6.0a (Win)
Microsoft Excel 5.0 (Mac)
Microsoft Excel 5.0c (Win)
NIH Image 1.59 (Mac)
.TIF
Open
no
use ResEdit*
Insert Picture
Insert Picture
no
Insert Picture
Open
.BMP
no
Open
no
Insert Picture
Insert Picture
no
Insert Picture
no
.GIF
Open
Open
no
no
no
no
no
no
.MAC
Open As/TIFF
.PCX
no
use ResEdit*
Insert Picture
Insert Picture
no
Insert Picture
Open
no
no
Insert Picture
no
Insert Picture
no
*For instructions on using ResEdit™, see next page.
Additional packages, such as Claris Works and PowerPoint have also been tested. For these
systems, it is necessary to save the file with a “.TIFF” extension in order for them to recognize
the file as a TIF format.
If you have a specific software package that is not listed here, contact Alpha Innotech for a
diskette. This PC-formatted disk contains a gel image saved as five of the file types that
AlphaEaseFC™ can generate. Try opening each of these files in your software package to
determine compatibility. We recommend that you start with the .TIF file, as this is the default
Alpha Innotech file format.
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Alpha Innotech User Manual, version 4
Using ResEdit™
1) Save image in IS-1000/500 as a TIFF or MACTIFF
2) Obtain a copy of the freeware ResEdit™ by downloading from Apple Computers through the
Internet.
3) Open ResEdit™. An animated startup display will show up and continue until you click on
the mouse or any key.
4) A dialog box will appear. Open the TIFF image. Another dialog box will appear asking if
you want to add a resource fork, click on ‘OK.’
5) Next go to the File pulldown menu and click on Get Info for This File
6)
In the File Info window, change the Type to TIFF (instead of TEXT), and the Creator to
DAD2 (instead of DOSA). (Must be typed in all CAPS as shown here). Close the window
and save changes. Quit ResEdit™.
7) After this procedure, the icon will change to a TIFF icon and the file may be opened in
Canvas.
A.2
Appendix B
Appendix B: AlphaEaseFC Molecular
Weight Library Files
A library including the following DNA, RNA and protein molecular weight standards has been
incorporated into AlphaEaseFC. For information about using these standard files, see Section
5.2.
DNA Size Standards (in bp)
HINDIII PHIX174 BRL10BP BRL50BP BRL100BP PRO100BP BRL123BP BRL1KB BRLHIMW
23130
1353
200
500
1500
1500
4182
12216
48502
9416
1078
190
450
1400
1000
4059
11198
38416
6557
872
180
400
1300
900
3936
10180
33498
4361
603
170
350
1200
800
3813
9162
29942
2322
310
160
300
1100
700
3690
8144
24776
2027
281
150
250
1000
600
3567
7126
22621
564
271
140
200
900
500
3444
6108
19399
125
234
130
150
800
400
3321
5090
17057
194
120
100
700
300
3198
4072
15004
118
110
50
600
200
3075
3054
12220
72
100
500
100
2952
2036
10086
90
400
2829
1636
8612
80
300
2706
1018
8271
70
200
2583
517
60
100
2460
396
50
2337
344
40
2214
298
30
2091
220
20
1968
201
10
1845
154
1722
134
1599
75
1476
1353
1230
1107
984
861
738
615
492
369
246
123
B.1
Alpha Innotech User Manual, version 4
RNA Size Standards
Protein Markers (in kD)
BRLRNA1 BRLRNA2 BRLPROT1 BRLPROT2 BRLPROT3 BRL10KD NOVEXM12 SIGMAHMW SIGMAPMW
1770
9490
87.0
200.0
43.0
200
200.0
205
190
1520
7460
60.0
97.4
29.0
120
116.3
116
108
1280
4400
53.0
68.0
18.4
110
97.4
97
89
780
2370
46.0
43.0
14.3
100
66.3
84
77
530
1350
40.0
29.0
6.2
90
55.4
66
61
400
240
34.0
18.4
3.0
80
36.5
55
41
280
29.0
14.3
70
31.0
45
36
155
27.0
60
21.5
36
21.0
50
14.4
15.0
40
6.0
6.5
30
3.5
20
2.5
10
B.2
Appendix C
Appendix C: Security Features
This feature should only be used by the purchaser or supervisor of the system.
Remove this page from the manual and store it in a safe place.
When the system is shared by a number of users, security features may be useful for regulating
or maintaining a log of instrument use.
To Change the Security Setup
When you initially receive the system, all security features are inactive and the password is set to
"master." We suggest that the master password not be changed. If this password is changed
or forgotten, contact Alpha Innotech's technical support staff at 1-800-795-5556.
To change the security setup, open the SETUP menu and click on Security. A dialog box will
appear asking for the system password.
Security Dialog Box
Use the mouse to click in the Password box (or use the <tab> key to jump to the box) and enter
the master password. Next, click LOGIN, and a new dialog box will appear with security
options listed.
By clicking on the options in this dialog box, the supervisor can change the system password, set
the security mode, add and delete names from the authorized list, and activate the Auto Logout
feature. When the desired options have been selected, click the OK button. Follow this
procedure any time changes to the security mode are necessary.
NOTE:
You must exit and re-launch AlphaEaseFC™ Software in order for any changes to take
place.
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Alpha Innotech User Manual, version 4
Security Features Dialog Box
If you decide not to edit the security settings at this time, simply click on the EXIT button to
dismiss the dialog box.
C.2
Appendix C
Setting Various Security Levels
A variety of security levels are available. Each is described below, in increasing order of
security. Also shown are the proper settings in the dialog box to choose each security level.
Option 1: No security functions
No log in or log out is required and anyone can use the system.
Option 2: Open system with user name log in and out
This security level keeps the system open but requires users to log into the system by typing their
name. In this mode, a list of users with their log in and log out times is generated.
Each time a new name is used, it is added to the master user list. Since this list requires a
password (in case the system is later changed to a closed, passworded system), AlphaEaseFC™
will automatically assign the user’s name (in uppercase letters) as the password.
When finished using AlphaEaseFC™, the user can choose Logoff from the File menu, or can log
out by exiting the system. Otherwise, he/she will remain logged in (unless Auto Logout is
active).
C.3
Alpha Innotech User Manual, version 4
Option 3: Open system with user name and password log in and out
This security level keeps the system open but requires users to log into the system by typing their
names and passwords. When someone enters a name and assigns a password to that name, the
same password is needed whenever that name is used to log in. Only one password can be
assigned to a name. A list of users with their log in and log out times is generated.
Note: passwords are case sensitive.
Option 4: Closed system with user name log in and out
A user can log in only by entering an authorized name. A user log is generated.
In closed systems, the system supervisor may want to add or remove names from a list of
authorized users. To do this, click the Add/Remove Users button. A dialog box will appear
with a list of all the current users.
C.4
Appendix C
Option 5: Closed system with user name and password log in and out
The system only accepts authorized names and their passwords at log in. The system supervisor
can add or remove names from a list of authorized users as described above. Only one password
can be assigned to each name. A user log is generated.
NOTE:
Passwords are case sensitive.
C.5
Alpha Innotech User Manual, version 4
BLANK PAGE
C.6
Appendix D
Appendix D: Cabinet Installation
Instructions
MultiImage™ II Light Cabinet (DE-500)
Pictured with the cabinet top (DE-500FC).
D.1
Alpha Innotech User Manual, version 4
Cabinet Setup
When you remove the light cabinet from its shipping carton, it is already partially assembled.
The camera mounting assembly is packed separately in the same container. The UV
transilluminator and cabinet top are both packed in separate boxes. Make sure you have received
all the hardware before discarding the shipping carton.
1. The largest box will be the DE500 cabinet. This box will include camera bracket, camera
bracket gasket, RS-232 cable, magnetic pad and pen.
2. Set the entire cabinet assembly on a level, flat surface. (There are indentations to the bottom
of the cabinet, please use them for lifting and placement of the unit. The cabinet weighs
80lbs with the UV transilluminator please take appropriate precautions in lifting and moving
the light cabinet.) The footprint dimensions for the cabinet is 20” wide X 14” deep.
3. Open door and remove shipping foam from above and below fold down white light table.
Note: camera bracket, gasket, RS-232 and magnetic pad/pen will be located in and around
the shipping foam. Fold up white light table.
Note: be sure to remove the inserts from the white sidelight bulbs.
4. Slide out UV tray. Unpack UV transilluminator and mount onto sliding tray (be sure to align
UV transilluminator rubber feet into sliding tray open positions). Inside the cabinet, locate
the power cord taped with RED tape. Please uncoil and insert into the power socket for the
UV transilluminator. (Additionally: if installing ChromaLight™ please use the BLUE taped
power cord for the transilluminator.
5. Plug the light cabinet into the surge protector, turn on the cabinet, and test each of the
switches on the front of the cabinet to ensure that all connections were made properly. Note:
Do not plug a transilluminator or the MultiImage™ II light cabinet into the same power
strip as the computer; use a different circuit whenever possible.
6. AlphaEaseFC provides cabinet controls through software. An RS-232 cable that is supplied
with the cabinet is required for this purpose. Please located the RS-232 cable insert it into
the corresponding socket next to the power connect and power switch on the rear of the
DE500 (see picture following page).
D.2
Appendix D
(DE-500 Power Connect, Power Switch, RS-232 connect)
Then connect the other end of the RS-232 cable to COM 1 on the rear of the computer (see
below picture).
(CPU mouse, keyboard, printer port, RS-232 connectors)
WARNING:
IF EQUIPMENT IS USED IN A MANNER NOT SPECIFIED BY THE
MANUFACTURER, THE PROTECTION PROVIDED BY THE EQUIPMENT MAY BE
IMPAIRED.
“CAUTION:
POWER SUPPLY CORD IS USED AS THE MAIN DISCONNECT DEVICE. ENSURE
THAT THE SOCKET-OUTLET IS LOCATED/INSTALLED NEAR THE EQUIPMENT
AND IS EASILY ACCESSIBLE”
D.3
Alpha Innotech User Manual, version 4
Symbols:
Ultra Violet Light
WARNING: Please use protective equipment when using UV light. UV protective goggles, face shields, long
sleeve lab coats can be obtained from major scientific distribution catalogs. (e.g. Fisher Scientific)
CAUTION: Risk of electric shock
HAZARD, please take appropriate precautions
Earth (ground) Terminal
( 250 V
3.15 A )
Fuse symbol
Power Ratings:
DE 500 MultiImage™ II cabinet is rated at:
250V 50/60 Hz 3A
Fuse:
250V 3.15A
D.4
Appendix D
Camera Installation
1. Write down the position of each filter on the magnetic notepad, using the dry erase marker
provided. Standard with the MultiImage™ II cabinet is position one: Chemiluminescent
Imaging, position two: Ethidium Bromide filter. Please write down appropriate filters for
positions three, four and five.
Note: if a DE-500 cabinet was purchased, filter positions also need to be customized in the
software (see manual for detailed instructions). If the system was shipped as a unit, this step
will have been performed at the factory.
2. The MultiImage™ II Light Cabinet is sent with a rubber gasket which accommodates both
the zoom lens (F 1.2 12.5X75mm) and the fast lens attachment (F 0.85 25mm) To attach the
camera mounting assembly to the enclosure, position the rubber gasket over the hole in the
light cabinet.
3. Next, position the camera mount assembly on top of the gasket. The vertical bracket should
be positioned towards the back. Tighten the 4 small thumbscrews attached to the base.
4. Make sure the camera has all its lenses attached in the proper order. (The camera assembly
consists of the camera body, zoom lens, and 2+ close-up lens.)
5. Position the camera so the single mounting hole faces towards the vertical mounting bracket
and screw in the according camera screw to secure the camera to the mount.
6. Push the camera into the cabinet so the lens just moves through the rubber gasket.
7. Attach the camera to the mounting bracket using the thumbscrew provided. (The screw is
packaged attached to the camera mount assembly.) To allow for proper positioning of the
camera, do not tighten the screw yet; leave it loose enough to allow the camera to slide up
and down slightly.
8. Turn the focus ring until the mark lines up with the "1" mark. Carefully raise the camera 1/4
inch and tighten the thumb screw until the camera is secure. This places the camera high
enough that the lens assembly has adequate space to move up and down.
9. Connect the camera control cable as outlined in Chapter 1 of the AlphaImager™,
ChemiImager™, or FluorChem™ manual.
D.5