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Bruker Acquires Emerging Light Sheet Microscopy Company Luxendo

Patented SPIM Technology Expands Bruker’s Fluorescence Microscopy Portfolio.  Bruker today announced that it has acquired Luxendo, a privately held spin-off of the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) that develops and manufactures proprietary light-sheet fluorescence microscopy instruments.

Luxendo’s proprietary single plane illumination microscopy (SPIM) technique significantly reduces sampling times over conventional laser scanning confocal microscopes, while reducing phototoxicity and damaging side effects on living specimens. This SPIM technology also enables the fastest scan speeds for volumetric imaging of small organisms, cell monolayers, and cleared tissue. Financial details of the transaction were not disclosed.

Headquartered in Heidelberg, Germany, Luxendo was founded in September 2015. Under the technical leadership of Dr. Lars Hufnagel, Group Leader of the EMBL Cell Biology and Biophysics Unit, Luxendo was able to rapidly develop robust product solutions based on the patented SPIM technology. The SPIM microscopes significantly enhance Bruker’s existing portfolio of swept-field confocal, super-resolution, and multiphoton fluorescence microscope product lines, enabling new research advances in small organism embryology, live-cell imaging, brain development and cleared brain tissue, and optogenetics applications. This acquisition is another important step forward in Bruker’s portfolio transformation.

With its strong IP position and unique SPIM technology, Luxendo has quickly established itself in the light-sheet microscopy market, particularly in Europe.  Similar to our recent acquisition in super-resolution microscopy, the new capabilities provide valuable application synergies to our current suite of instruments, and we feel that we can take the business to the next level in both global market reach and next-generation development, which should greatly benefit our life sciences research customers.

Dr. Mark R. Munch, President of the Bruker NANO Group

“Light-sheet microscopy is revolutionizing bioimaging, and Luxendo has had an influential role in the adoption of this type of imaging in an ever-growing variety of live-sample studies,” added Dr. Andreas Pfuhl, CEO of Luxendo. “We feel that our history with EMBL has given us unique insights into what bioimaging researchers need both right now and in the near future. We are very gratified to join an internationally esteemed instrumentation company like Bruker, whose philosophy, culture and reputation so closely align with our research-oriented goals.”

It has been very rewarding to witness the rapid trajectory from pioneering technology developed at EMBL to Luxendo’s well-designed, robust microscopes, and now this acquisition. We anticipate that Bruker, with its excellent reputation in providing innovative technology, will make SPIM even more widely available. It will be truly exciting to see what the larger biological research community will discover with light-sheet microscopy.

EMBL Director General Iain Mattaj.

Luxendo launched the MuVi-SPIM and InVi-SPIM microscopes in 2016. Both microscopes avoid sample phototoxicity by sequentially illuminating a stack of small slices of the organism, allowing scientists to observe living organisms for extended periods of time without photodamage. The MuVi-SPIM microscope allows fast 3D imaging of living objects, such as spheroids and whole specimens without the need of sample rotation. The InVi-SPIM microscope enables fast 3D imaging with extremely gentle sample handling for cell cultures and developing embryonic samples. For more information, please visit

EMBL is Europe’s flagship laboratory for the life sciences. We are an intergovernmental organization established in 1974 and are supported by over 20 member states. EMBL performs fundamental research in molecular biology, studying the story of life. We offer services to the scientific community; train the next generation of scientists and strive to integrate the life sciences across Europe.

We are international, innovative and interdisciplinary. We are more than 1600 people, from over 80 countries, operating across six sites in Barcelona (Spain), Grenoble (France), Hamburg (Germany), Heidelberg (Germany), Hinxton (UK) and Monterotondo (Italy). Our scientists work in independent groups and conduct research and offer services in all areas of molecular biology. Our research drives the development of new technology and methods in the life sciences. We work to transfer this knowledge for the benefit of society. For more information, please visit

For more than 55 years, Bruker has enabled scientists to make breakthrough discoveries and develop new applications that improve the quality of human life. Bruker’s high-performance scientific instruments and high-value analytical and diagnostic solutions enable scientists to explore life and materials at molecular, cellular and microscopic levels.

In close cooperation with our customers, Bruker is enabling innovation, productivity and customer success in life science molecular research, in applied and pharma applications, and in microscopy, nano-analysis and industrial applications. In recent years, Bruker has also become a provider of high-performance systems for cell biology, preclinical imaging, clinical phenomics and proteomics research, clinical microbiology, and for molecular pathology research. For more information, please visit:


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