Life Imaging Center

Application & Booking
Statistics & Publications

General Information

Life Imaging Center (LIC)
University of Freiburg
Habsburgerstr. 49
79104 Freiburg im Breisgau

2nd address:
Signalhaus – BIOSS Centre
Schänzlestr. 18

+49 761 203-2941

How to get there

By train

From Freiburg Hbf (Central station) take tram line 4 (to station: Hauptstraße), local train connections (direction Offenburg) to station Freiburg Herdern (only 1 station) or bus line 27 (to station: Herdern Kirche) and then by foot: 5 minutes

By car

From south (e.g. Basel): Motorway A5 Basel-Karlsruhe; take gateway 62: „Freiburg Mitte” (Center). Take the B31a direction “Freiburg/Donaueschingen”. Take B3 (exit “Merzhausen”) and turn right onto Stefan-Meier Straße. After the prison turn right onto Tennenbacherstraße and then turn left on Habsburgerstraße. From north (e.g. Karlsruhe): Motorway A5 Karlsruhe-Basel; take gateway 61: „Freiburg Nord” (North). Take the B294 direction “Freiburg-Nord/Waldkirch/Elztal/Glottertal/Gundelfingen”. Follow B294/B3 until you arrive at Habsburgerstraße.

By airplane

Approx. 1 hour bus ride from the EuroAirport Basel-Mulhouse-Freiburg or 2 to 3 hours by train or car from Frankfurt, Stuttgart or Zürich airports.

The Life Imaging Center (LIC) is a central core facility of the Albert-Ludwigs-University Freiburg open to members of all Faculties and the Universitätsklinikum. Currently around 250 active users from six Faculties (Biology, Medicine, Chemistry and Pharmacy, Environment and Natural Resources, Mathematics and Physics, and Engineering) use the LIC infrastructure. LIC users come from more than 68 workgroups and the combined usage time of the LIC microscopes in 2019 was about 10.450 hours. The LIC has approximately 60 – 80 new users per year and approximately the same number is leaving the facility each year. Users from external institutions (e.g. Max Planck Institutes) and from national and international universities (e.g. Basel, Strasbourg, Haute-Alsace) are able to use the LIC infrastructure in collaboration projects. More details about the application procedure and facility guidelines can be found at Application & Booking. You can find contact information for the head and staff of the LIC facility at Team website. The LIC consists of 14 rooms in the Hilde-Mangold Haus (HMH) with approximately 400 m² (9 microscopy rooms with 20 microscope set-ups (3D-STED, confocal FLIM, two 2-photon confocal microscopes, 4 conventional confocal microscopes with super-resolution (Zeiss Airyscan or Leica Lightning), lightsheet microscope, 3 high-end widefield ratio-imaging set-ups incl. TIRF, 4 fluorescence stereo microscopes, 3 special set-ups for screening). The LIC microscopes are hosted in Biosafety level S2 and S1 environments, connected to a large wet lab area and a cell culture room, both Biosafety level S2 classified. Additionally, the LIC offers a large computer lab with 12 high-end workstations for image processing and analysis. The LIC also has three more lab rooms with 4 confocal microscopes in the Signalhaus, Schänzlestr. 18 and two additional labs with associated equipment, hosting 3 LSM systems in a neighboring building of the Signalling Campus Freiburg (SCF).

Techniques and Samples:

Most modern microscopic techniques (2-Photon, FLIM, FRET, FRAP, FLIP, FLAP, photo-conversion, photo-activation, uncaging, spectral unmixing, multi-position and large area recording, TIRF, HILO microscopy, structured illumination, microinjection) can be performed in combination with live cells or organisms on the available microscope set-ups. The LIC has a major focus on live cell imaging of all kind of cells, organisms and culture systems used in cell signaling research, developmental biology and neurobiology. Samples are: Embryos (Danio rerio, Drosophila melanogaster, Mus musculus, Xenopus laevis), model organisms or cell clusters (C.elegans, spheres, cysts), plants (root, leave, growth cone), organoids, neuronal cultures, explants and biopsies from tissue slices, spheroids, flow cultures as well as cells cultured on glass slides. LIC is specialized in long time observation and experiments on these objects, high resolution large area and/or multiple location recordings of thick objects with 2P and UV/VIS excitation. A further specialty is culturing and permanent microscopic observation of cells and spheroids over periods of up to 10 days (also under flow conditions in special chambers). All types of fluorescent proteins including many photo-activatable and photo-convertible are used. We have a large library of fluorescent proteins (more than 150) available for our users via the BIOSS toolbox and we perform test experiments with these constructs before giving them out to our customers. See also: Available excitation wavelengths for imaging at LIC (PDF).

Lab Tour

Imaging 1

ZEISS Axio Observer with Colibri


TILL Spinning Disk microscope with TIRF and photomanipulation

Lightsheet Z1

ZEISS Z.1 Lightsheet microscope

Light Z1-Ana

Zeiss AxioImager Z1 uprigh

AxioImager Z1

Zeiss AxioImager Z1 upright


LEICA TCS SP8 FALCON for Fluorescence Lifetime Imaging


ZEISS LSM 880 Examiner / Fast Airyscan with upright microscope

Stereo 2

LEICA MZ FL III with Zeiss ICC color camera


ZEISS LSM 880 Observer / Fast Airyscan with inverted microscope

Stereo 4



ZEISS LSM 510 DUO Axiovert 200 with line scanner and META


Zeiss AxioZoom with AxioCam MRm and AxioCam 105


Leica TCS SP8 STED 3x Super-Resolution

Stereo 3

LEICA MZ FL III with IDEA color camera

Wet Lab

Fully equipped wet lab for preparation of life cell imaging experiments

Osmonat 3000

Freezing Point Osmometer

Screen TILL (FEI-More)

Microscope for medium throughput screening


ZEISS spinning disk inverted microscope Axio Observer with laser ablation unit




Refraction Index Measurements

Biostation 1

Dedicated long-time live cell time-lapse imaging set-up

Biostation 2

Dedicated long-time live cell time-lapse imaging set

IncuCyte FLR

Essen Instr. Microscope inside an Incubator with Fluorescence

Imaging 4

ZEISS Axio Observer with TIRF

Tissue Culture

ZEISS Axio Observer with TIRF

Ibidi Pump System

System for flow condition during cultivation of cells

Imaging 3

ZEISS Axio Observer with Monochromator

LIC-Office I
LIC-Office II