As part of our Marie Curie Fellowship, each Early Stage Reseacher (ERS) is obliged to undertake an industrial secondment with the purpose of having first hand exposure of science in industry. In May 2018, four ALKATRAS ESRs went to wonderful Vienna to undertake their industrial secondment with TissueGnostics. Teresa Poggio (Universitätsklinkum Freiburg), Cosimo Lobello (Masaryk University), Stephen Ducray (University of Cambridge) and I – Joanna Szydzik (University of Gothenburg) were hosted by TissueGnostics in their headquarters. Celebrating their 15th birthday this year, TissueGnostics is an Austrian company focusing on integrated solutions for high content and/or high throughput scanning and analysis of microscopy samples.
From the onset we were warmly welcomed into the TissueGnostics family. We learnt of TissueGnostics’ history, how Rupert (the company’s co-founder and CEO) expanded on his PhD research to build TissueGnostics, and how TissugeGnostics are continuing to expand their operations across the globe. Our training began with an introduction on how to extract information and significance from images (color management, segmentation and feature extractions/classifications). As the training sessions progressed, we were introduced to a variety of image interpretation obstacles and how they can be resolved by using TG’s tools. TissueGnostics provide versatile microscopy systems, but additionally provide three imaging analysis software platforms: StrataQuest, HistoQuest, and TissueQuest – each of which is designed for specific samples depending on context. We spent a large portion of our time learning how to use these platforms. Not only did we have the opportunity to learn first-hand how to analyse pre-scanned samples but we also had the opportunity to analyse our own samples (under supervision of experts) which we scanned using one of TG’s upright TissueFAXS Fluo systems. In addition to giving us a taste of how applied science/biomedical companies operate, this exposure also allowed us to experience a new working environment, and a new way of thinking.