The award for Best Presentation at the 2018 Spanish-Portuguese Meeting for Advanced Optical Microscopy (SPAOM2018) held in Granada, Spain was given to Miroslav Ovečka from the Department of Cell Biology at the Centre of the Region Haná for Biotechnological and Agricultural Research (CRH) at the end of October. He impressed conference participants with his presentation of the results from the Olomouc laboratory on monitoring the development of living plants using advanced microscopy.
“The aim was to introduce our advanced approaches which allow us to study plants at a level that was unimaginable a few years ago. I tried to present our approaches to others in a way that they could be inspired by us. I was pleased by the number of colleagues who came up to me after the talk to get more information useful in their own research,” said Ovečka, who beat out 38 other presentations given in the main scientific programme by representatives of leading European laboratories. Only a minor part of the scientific programme was devoted to the microscopy of plants.
“Most of the talks at the conference were given by really top scientists working with microscopy of animals, which is much more advanced in comparison to plants. There were also speakers involved in the process of developing basic methodological approaches in this area. To be awarded against such competition is a great honour for me,” added Ovečka.
His talk at one of the methodological workshops, entitled Plant and Bacterial Imaging, in which he informed participants about the specific steps necessary for the preparation of plants for advanced microscopy, also evoked great response.
The CRH Laboratory in Olomouc is one of the world’s top research groups in the imaging of plant development and its internal design using fluorescence microscopy. From the model plant Arabidopsis, they have advanced to a much larger crop – alfalfa, which can be imaged in almost natural conditions for several days via a specialised microscope. The unique results of the group with advanced microscopy have been summarised recently in a review article published by the prestigious journal Nature Plants.