Lucia Cytogenetics

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Metaphase Finder

LUCIA Cytogenetics™


The Metaphase Finder system consists of carefully selected top quality hardware components all produced by well-established manufacturers. In a very compact setup, you can find the following devices cooperating together:

  • Nikon Eclipse Ni-E microscope: The computer controlled illumination ensures stable light conditions. The absolute coordinates focus control ensures reliable and fast auto focus.

  • AVT Pike camera: A fast CCD camera with a large chip covering the full field of view.

  • Märzhäuser Slide Express, ProScan motorized stage: These two devices compose a high-performance combination providing precision, speed and reliability of the scanning.

  • Lucia Immersion Oil Dispenser: Allows automation of the high-magnification image acquisition phase, which would otherwise need human assistance.


  • The loader with the capacity of 200 slides* together with the integrated bar code reader open ways to build a highly effective system.

    * - Optionally, a basic 4-8 slides scanning stage can be used, leaving the way to upgrade to the full 200 slides system open.

  • The included metaphase classifier is fine-tuned to handle different sample types and preparation techniques.

  • Thanks to the network-based database and full bar code support, the system is broadly extensible and can whenever be adapted to meet increasing demands.


Press one button

Once the system is adjusted by the administrator, the scanning process can be run by a single button.

Walk away

The slide loader capacity of 200 slides allows about 7 hours of unattended scanning at approximate speed under 2 minutes per full slide (~90mm2 using 10x objective).

Check on the progress anytime

The scanning results are immediately accessible within the database.


  • The network-accessible database provides fast access to the metaphase galleries including the stage coordinates data.

  • Metaphases can be located and reviewed on any workstation thanks to the automatic coordinates recalculation procedure.

  • Metaphase images can be captured automatically using a high magnification (100x) oil immersion objective. The selection of metaphases to be scanned can be either automatic or manual.

High magnification image ready for analysis

The scanning progress is indicated during scanning

Gallery of metaphase thumbnails after the search

High magnification images displayed in the basic database view

Märzhäuser Slide Express attached to Nikon Ni-E microscope

Immersion oil dispenser attached to the microscope


You can vary the system to fit the intended workflow. Options are numerous: a one-computer system or a network of workstations dedicated to single tasks:

Slides Registration

Registering new slides via a light-weight database client. Each slide gets a unique barcode associating it with a patient in the database. After the registration, the slides are placed into the loader cassettes. Patient data can be transferred to the database from a laboratory information management system (LIMS).

Automatic Metaphase Search

Metaphase Finder scans the slides and acquires thumbnail images of the metaphases found. Each image is assigned to a patient based on the bar-code information. Everything is saved to the database.

Slides Distribution

Slides which have been searched are either left in the Metaphase Finder for automatic image acquisition or passed to an active workstation for manual image acquisition and analysis.

Image Acquisition

A high magnification oil immersion objective is used to make a full-resolution image of the suitable metaphases. The image is saved to the database.


Full-resolution images are analysed by software means of LUCIA Cytogenetics™.

Reseek Metaphases

Coordinates of each metaphase and its quality index are saved to the database during the search. Combined with the barcode identification, the system can physically locate any metaphase on any slide anytime.

One of the possible configurations:

Workstation levels

Metaphase Finder

Consists of: Microscope, Camera, Märzhäuser Slide Express, Lucia

Active Workstation

Consists of: Microscope, Camera, Lucia

Passive Workstation

Consists of: (Microscope), Lucia

Laboratory Client

Consists of: Lucia LAB database client

Main Tasks

  • Slides Registration

  • Automatic Metaphase Search

  • High Magnification Image Acquisition

  • Analysis

  • Reseek Selected Metaphase