Standard cell imaging methods require fixation, which is impractical for monitoring cellular dynamics and often results in experimental artifacts. Live-cell imaging, on the other hand, needs no fixation and is able to track cellular behaviors and interactions in real time.
Live-cell analysis is considered the gold standard for probing complex and dynamic cellular events. However, traditional microscopy and stains weren’t designed for use with live cells. More recently, various instruments, reagents, and probes have been developed for live-cell techniques.