Our main continuing aim is the research of novel microscopy imaging techniques, and their biomedical and nanotechnology applications.

We focus especially on Holographic Incoherent-light-source Quantitative Phase Imaging (hiQPI), a concept we have introduced and are investigating intensively, which provides the highest level of image quality and accuracy. The subsequent development of optical devices uses our long-term experience in the construction of microscopes and optical instruments, verified by the successful commercialization of the Q-Phase (Telight) holographic microscope. 

Our applications of these imaging techniques and instruments include nanotechnology for nanostructure characterization and biomedicine, namely cell biology, cancer, and neuroscience research

This research stems from our general theoretical and experimental work in fundamental optics focused on coherence, scattering, unconventional imaging devices utilizing both classical and modern (metasurface, fourth-generation) optics, photonics structures, vortex and specialized beams, polarization effects and light-wave propagation in a non-Euclidean optical space. 

Microscopy imaging techniques:

  • Research and development of hiQPI optical systems aiming for 3D imaging and holographic tomography, and advanced correlative fluorescence-holographic imaging [Bouchal et al., 2019ac; Fordey et al., 2021; Dvořák et al., 2022; Bouchal and Bouchal, 2023; Bouchal et al., 2023; patents: CZ 307520, EP3673305A1, JP7274150B2 (granted 2023)].
  • Methods for hiQPI through turbid media using coherence gating [Ďuriš and Chmelík, 2021].
  • Superresolution hiQPI using superoscillation and coherent-structured-imaging approaches [Ďuriš et al., 2022; Ďuriš et al., 2023].
  • Application of optical vortices in axial localization [Schovánek et al., 2020].
  • Research and utilization of geometric-phase optical components for holographic imaging [Bouchal et al.,  2019b; Bouchal et al., 2019c].
  • Transfer of holographic principles to scanning near-field optical microscopy [Dvořák et al., 2018; Dvořák et al., 2022].
  • Development of advanced image-processing methods particularly for advanced (high-accuracy, turbid-media, 3D) hiQPI, as well as pattern and process recognition and/or classification [Gómez et al., 2018; Uhlirova et al., 2018; Štrbková et al., 2020; Tučková et al., 2021; Zicha, 2022].

Applications in cell biology, cancer and neuroscience research:

  • Characterization of responses of live cancer cells to genetic manipulation [Šeda et al., 2021], to potential migrastatic (anti-migration) drugs [Šuráňová et al., 2023], to specific inhibitors [Palušová et al., 2020], during epithelial-mesenchymal transition [Štrbková et al., 2020], and to 3D extracellular matrix [Tolde et al., 2018].
  • Development of a strategy and accessories for personalized cancer treatment based on live-cell dry-mass profiling [Zicha and Chmelík, 2023].
  • Biophysical analysis of the dynamics of the subcellular mechanical forces significant for expressing malignant traits in vitro [Dostál et al., 2023].
  • Optogenetically-evoked vasomotion in mouse cortex in vivo [Uhlirova et al., 2018].

Applications in nanotechnology:

  • Orientation and shape imaging of plasmonic nanoparticles [Fordey et al., 2021; Bouchal et al., 2023].
  • High-resolution quantitative phase imaging of plasmonic metasurfaces [Bouchal et al., 2019a].
  • Comparison of rigorous approaches for simulation of nanophotonic structures with graphene [Čtyroký et al., 2020a]; coupling of waveguide mode to graphene plasmons [Čtyroký et al., 2020b].

Fundamental optics:

  • Theoretical study of scattering, coherence effects, and specifically coherence gating in holographic imaging [Ďuriš and Chmelík, 2021; Ďuriš et al., 2022; Ďuriš et al., 2023].
  • Theoretical study of the topological Floquet edge states in a photonic analog of the driven Su-Schrieffer-Heeger model [Petráček and Kuzmiak, 2020].
  • Theoretical investigation of bound states in the continuum (BICs) in photonic structures: classification of states of the extended Fano-Anderson model [Petráček and Kuzmiak, 2022a] and effect of symmetry breaking [Petráček and Kuzmiak, 2022b]; assessment of various types of BICs in photonic waveguides [Čtyroký et al., 2023, Čtyroký et al., 2022]; and a proposal of a new BIC mechanism in coupled systems [Petráček et al., 2023].
  • Designing unconventional imaging devices [Bělín et al., 2022] and light-wave propagation in a non-Euclidean optical space [Bělín et al., 2021b, Bělín et al., 2021a].
  • Study of the vortex and specialized beams generated by metasurfaces and anisotropic reflections [Bouchal and Bouchal, 2022; Bouchal and Bouchal, 2023].