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IVIS Spectrum In Vivo Imaging System

The IVIS® Spectrum in vivo imaging system combines 2D optical and 3D optical tomography in one platform. The system uses leading optical technology for preclinical imaging research and development ideal for non-invasive longitudinal monitoring of disease progression, cell trafficking and gene expression patterns in living animals.

Part Number 124262
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For research use only. Not for use in diagnostic procedures.


An optimized set of high efficiency filters and spectral un-mixing algorithms lets you take full advantage of bioluminescent and fluorescent reporters across the blue to near infrared wavelength region. It also offers single-view 3D tomography for both fluorescent and bioluminescent reporters that can be analyzed in an anatomical context using our Digital Mouse Atlas or registered with our multimodality module to other tomographic technologies such as MR, CT or PET.

For advanced fluorescence pre-clinical imaging, the IVIS Spectrum has the capability to use either trans-illumination (from the bottom) or epi-illumination (from the top) to illuminate in vivo fluorescent sources. 3D diffuse fluorescence tomography can be performed to determine source localization and concentration using the combination of structured light and trans illumination fluorescent images. The instrument is equipped with 10 narrow band excitation filters (30nm bandwidth) and 18 narrow band emission filters (20nm bandwidth) that assist in significantly reducing autofluorescence by the spectral scanning of filters and the use of spectral unmixing algorithms. In addition, the spectral unmixing tools allow the researcher to separate signals from multiple fluorescent reporters within the same animal.

Features and Benefits

  • High-sensitivity in vivo imaging of fluorescence and bioluminescence
  • High throughput (5 mice) with 23 cm field of view
  • High resolution (to 20 microns) with 3.9 cm field of view
  • Twenty eight high efficiency filters spanning 430 – 850 nm
  • Supports spectral unmixing applications
  • Ideal for distinguishing multiple bioluminescent and fluorescent reporters
  • Optical switch in the fluorescence illumination path allows reflection-mode or transmission-mode illumination
  • 3D diffuse tomographic reconstruction for both fluorescence and bioluminescence
  • Ability import and automatically co-register CT or MRI images yielding a functional and anatomical context for your scientific data.
  • NIST traceable absolute calibrations
  • Gas anesthesia inlet and outlet ports
  • Class I Laser Product

Selected Publications:

For additional publications, please visit Google Scholar.


Height 206.0 cm
Imaging Modality Optical Imaging
Optical Imaging Classification Bioluminescence imaging, Fluorescence Imaging
Portable No
Product Brand Name IVIS
Width 65.0 cm
Resources, Events & More
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Application Note

Advances in 3D Optical Imaging Quantification and Sensitivity

Pre-clinical in vivo imaging,Advances in the detection and quantification for 3D optical tomography of bioluminescent and fluorescent reporters to quantify in terms of either cell number or absolute pmol concentration will be discussed. These methods include enhancing the detected signal levels using slight compression which reduces the amount of tissue light propagates through. Calibration techniques to improve signal location by reducing the excitation light artifacts, the amount of detected autofluorescence and techniques to quantify 3D reconstruction results in terms of biological activity will be demonstrated.,Introduction,Optical tomography of bioluminescent and fluorescent reporters in pre-clinical animal models is an important technology for the translational study of disease and drug development. However, the quality of 3D reconstructions can be limited by the sensitivity of detection. 3D results often lack quantification with biologically relevant units, therefore, new methods to improve detection and to quantify the results in terms of absolute cell number or dye molecules have been developed.

Cerenkov Imaging of Radioisotopes in IVIS systems

Cerenkov Emission from radioisotopes in tissue,Optical imaging detects photons in the visible range of the electromagnetic,spectrum. PET and SPECT imaging instruments are sensitive to photons in the much,higher energy range of x-rays and gamma rays. While the PET and SPECT probes,which can generate Cerenkov light in tissue will continue to produce the relevant,gamma- and x-rays, visible photons will be produced from the Cerenkov emission,which the IVIS® will detect.,In beta decay emitters such as PET probes and isotopes such as 90Y, 177Lu, 131I and 32P,the beta particle will travel in the tissue until it either annihilates with an electron or,loses momentum due to viscous electromagnetic forces.,It is possible that the beta (electron or positron),is relativistic, traveling faster than the speed,of light in the tissue. While it is impossible,to travel than the speed of light in a vacuum,(c), the speed of light in tissue is v = c / n,where n is the tissue index of refraction and,n = 1. Cerenkov photons will be generated,by a relativistic charged particle in a dielectric medium such as tissue.

Imaging Oncolytic Virus Infection in Cancer Cells

Aside from the traditional small-molecule chemotherapeutics or targeted therapy agents that have been widely used in the clinic for decades, a new type of cancer therapeutics based on oncolytic viruses has recently gained attention in the field of research. Oncolytic viruses are genetically modified viruses capable of delivering therapeutic gene payload to cancer cells.

There are many types of oncolytic viruses each having a different tumor-targeting mechanism. This application note highlights using Sindbis pseudovirus genetically modified with firefly luciferase reporter gene to non-invasively evaluate, monitor, and quantify oncolytic viral infection in living tumors and subsequent virus-host interactions in real-time using IVIS® optical imaging.

Stem Cell Research and Regenerative Medicine

With the potential to treat a wide range of disease, from organ damage to congenital defects, stem cell research and tissue engineering form the underlying basis of regenerative medicine. Significant advances in the science of skin regeneration, for example, have now made it possible to develop and grow artificial skin grafts in a lab for treatment of burn victims. Other therapeutic applications include the use of stem cells to treat and repair central nervous system diseases such as ischemia and cerebral palsy, cardiovascular diseases, as well as autoimmune diseases including type I diabetes.

Vascular Imaging Probes For Oncology and Inflammation Using the IVIS Spectrum

Optical-based in vivo imaging of vascular changes and vascular leak is an emerging modality for studying altered physiology in a variety of different cancers and inflammatory states. A number of fluorescent imaging probes that circulate with the blood, but have no target selectivity, have been used to detect tumor leakiness as an indication of abnormal tumor vasculature. Inflammation is also characterized by distinct vascular changes, including vasodilation and increased vascular permeability, which are induced by the actions of various inflammatory mediators. This process is essential for facilitating access for appropriate cells, cytokines, and other factors to tissue sites in need of healing or protection from infection. This application note investigates the use of three fluorescent imaging probes, to detect and monitor vascular leak and inflammation in preclinical mouse breast cancer models.



3D Multimodality Imaging: See disease in all its dimensions

It’s simple: More information means more understanding,For today’s researchers in oncology, infectious diseases, inflammation, neuroscience, stem cells,and other disciplines, there’s an increasing need for in vivo imaging that enables you to visualize,multiple events simultaneously and to extract the maximum amount of information from each,subject – leading to greater biological understanding.,Multimodal imaging enables a better understanding of disease biology. By utilizing in vivo,optimized bioluminescent and fluorescent agents and radioactive probes, researchers can,measure depth, volume, concentration, and metabolic activity, providing a wealth of information,for untangling the mysteries of disease.,Coregistration allows researchers to overlay images from multiple imaging modalities, providing,more comprehensive insight into the molecular and anatomical features of a model subject.,For example, optical imaging data can be used to identify and quantify tumor burden at,the molecular level and, when integrated with microCT, provides a quantitative 3D view of,anatomical and functional readouts.,At PerkinElmer, we’ve developed industry leading imaging technology for preclinical research.,Our technology integrates 3D optical and PET modalities with microCT to provide a better,understanding of disease. And that means better monitoring of disease progression, earlier,detection of treatment efficacy, and deeper understanding of metabolic changes that take place,throughout disease development.


Case Study

Tracking Neuroinflammation Using Transgenic Mouse Models and Optical Imaging

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a devastating neurological disease for which there is no cure. Another lethal brain disease is stroke, which occurs when blood supply to the brain is disrupted by a blood vessel that bursts or becomes blocked. Neuroinflammation plays a key role in both of these diseases as well as in the pathogenesis for Alzheimer’s, multiple sclerosis, and other forms of brain injury.

Read this case study where Dr. Jasna Kriz and her colleagues at Laval University in Quebec, developed transgenic mouse models for optical imaging of cells such as astroglia, microglia, and neurons. Mice were modified to express firefly luciferase when immune processes are activated enabling the researchers to study early neuroinflammatory events using the high sensitivity 2D & 3D optical imaging on the IVIS® platform.

A Novel Mouse Model Using Optical Imaging to Detect On-Target, Off-Tumor CAR-T Cell Toxicity

CAR T therapy has achieved tremendous success in treating blood malignancies, however treating solid tumors with this therapy has proven to be challenging due to several factors such as on-tumor, off-tumor toxicity.

Read this case study where researchers from University of Pennsylvania created a mouse model that expresses tumor associated antigens in normal tissue to study off-tumor CAR-T cell toxicity. These studies used optical imaging on the IVIS® platform to longitudinally monitor off-tumor antigen expression, tumor progression, and CAR-T cell trafficking in live animals.

A Novel Non-Invasive In Vivo Diagnostic Tool for the Assessment of NASH

Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) describes a progressive pathology that affects the liver. Fat accumulation causes fatty liver (NAFL) or steatosis to develop, which leads to lipotoxicity and in turn induces liver inflammation and apoptosis, resulting in non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). NASH can progress to fibrosis and then cirrhosis, which in some cases will lead to hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC).

Read this case study to learn how non-invasive preclinical in vivo imaging was used to longitudinally visualize, quantify, and diagnose NASH with the goal of investigating the efficacy of liver fibrosis-preventing drugs on NAFLD progression.

PDF 963 KB
Using IVIS optical imaging of CRISPR/Cas9 engineered adipose tissue to study obesity prevention

Obesity is a global epidemic that is the fifth leading cause of death worldwide and in the US alone, nearly 85% of adults are expected to be overweight or obese by 2030. In addition to the increased risk of overall mortality, obesity is associated with an increased risk for other metabolic disorders such as diabetes and heart disease which pose a significant burden to health care systems.

Read this case study to learn how researchers at the Joslin Diabetes Center in Boston, Massachusetts used the IVIS® optical imaging system to visualize and quantify CRISPR/Cas9 engineered adipose tissue in a mouse model to study the prevention of obesity and obesity-related metabolic disorders.



In Vivo Imaging Solutions eBook

Researchers trust our in vivo imaging solutions to give them reliable, calibrated data that reveals pathway characterization and therapeutic efficacies for a broad range of indications. Our reagents, instruments, and applications support have helped hundreds of research projects over the years. And our hard-earned expertise makes us a trusted provider of pre-clinical imaging solutions— with more than 9,000 peer reviewed articles as proof.



IVISense™ Fluorescent Probe Selector Guide for Oncology Research

The goal of in vivo fluorescence molecular imaging is to enable non-invasive visualization and quantification of cellular and biological functioning to better understand and characterize disease processes and treatment effects earlier within the context of a biological system.

This selector guide for IVISense fluorescent probes is a powerful tool to help advance your oncology research. By matching probe properties to specific biology and biomarker characteristics, you can better understand how imaging and quantification of early biological changes associated with disease development, therapeutic efficacy, and drug-induced tissue changes can be realized.


Product Note

IVIS Spectrum Product Note

The IVIS Spectrum advanced pre-clinical optical imaging system combines high throughput and full tomographic optical imaging in one platform. The system uses leading optical imaging technology to facilitate non-invasive longitudinal monitoring of disease progression, cell trafficking and gene expression patterns in living animals. Take full advantage of bioluminescent and fluorescent reporters across the blue to near infrared wavelength region using optimized set of high efficiency filters and spectral unmixing. It also offers true 3D tomography for both fluorescent and bioluminescent reporters that can be analyzed in anatomical context against a Digital Mouse Atlas or registered with other tomographic technologies such as MR, CT or PET through the multimodality module.


Publication Review

In Vivo Imaging of Influenza Virus Infection in Immunized Mice

Influenza is a highly infectious airborne disease with an important societal burden. Annual epidemics have occurred throughout history causing tens of millions of deaths. Even a run-of-the-mill influenza infection can be debilitating to otherwise healthy people, and lethal to those who are elderly or frail, so vaccinations are important. Because of seasonal antigenic drift and antiviral resistance of the virus there is a critical need for the development of new and novel vaccines and antiviral drugs. In vivo optical imaging has emerged as a powerful, non-invasive tool to track viral load and therapeutic efficacy of vaccines and immunotherapies in small animal models.

Read how researchers at the NIH, NIAID, Emory University, and University of Wisconsin used the IVIS® optical imaging platform to successfully quantify and track viral load in mice and demonstrated that vaccine of human mAb administration has a protective or therapeutic effect in mice challenged with the influenza virus.

PDF 436 KB
Biopolymers Codelivering Engineered T Cells and STING Agonists can Eliminate Heterogenous Tumors

Adoptive cell transfer using chimeric antigen receptor (CAR-T) cell therapy in which the patient’s T-cells are extracted, genetically modified, and transferred back into the patient with the aim that these altered cells can recognize and attack cancer cells has revolutionized cancer immunotherapy. Although very successful in treating hematological malignancies, CAR T therapy is more challenging in treating solid tumors.

Learn how researchers at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and University of Washington used the IVIS Spectrum non-invasive imaging system to evaluate the synergistic antitumor effect of co-delivery of CAR T cells and STING-agonists via biopolymer scaffolds in an orthotopic murine model of pancreatic cancer.

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Evaluating a Novel Nanoparticle Platform for Controlled Liraglutide Release in a Type II Diabetes Mouse Model Via Optical Imaging

A large percentage of Type 2 diabetes mortality is related to cardiovascular complications. Consequently, there is a critical need for creating novel therapeutics that not only manage blood glucose levels, but also reduce the risk of developing cardiovascular diseases.

Liraglutide (Lira) is a recently approved drug used to treat Type II diabetes with excellent hypoglycemic effects while also improving cardiovascular function in patients. However its short half-life requires daily injections increasing the risk of poor patient compliance and other complications.

Read this publication review to learn how researchers used a Type II diabetes mouse model and optical imaging with the IVIS® platform to evaluate a nanoparticle system that offers a sustained and controlled release of Lira that overcomes the challenges of the short half-life of the drug.

PDF 538 KB
Imaging of tumor clones with differential liver colonization

Colorectal cancer patients often develop liver metastases and thus, frequently have poor prognosis. There additionally appears to be a vast heterogeneity in their liver metastatic disease, a characteristic that hasn’t been adequately explored in animal models of colorectal cancer. While bioluminescence imaging (BLI) has been widely used to non-invasively monitor colorectal cancer and liver metastastic development in vivo, a study specifically emphasizing their growth rates and colonization efficiencies within the liver microenvironment hasn’t been attempted until now.

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Regulatory Compliance Certification

Software Downloads

Technical Note

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FLIT 3 Reconstruction

Fluorescence Tomography – Source Reconstruction and Analysis - FLIT Reconstruction

High Resolution Images

Acquisition of High Resolution Images. This quick reference guide is for those researchers who wish to perform analysis that requires high resolution including in vitro studies when one may want to discern aspects about cell layers, ex vivo tissue imaging, or imaging of tissue slices. You will not need this resolution in most in vivo studies.

Image Overlay 2D

Not only is it possible to load multiple images as a group, for example multiple days of a longitudinal study, but it is also possible to load multiple images and Overlay them i.e. bioluminescent tumor with fluorescent targeted drug acquired in two separate images.

PDF 472 KB
Image Overlay 3D

It is possible to copy 3D sources (voxels) from one 3D reconstruction into another. For example, superimposing DLIT or FLIT signals is easy. However, the two combined sources must be based upon the same surface topography to produce meaningful information. Therefore it is imperative that the mouse remain completely still between acquisition of the DLIT and FLIT images.

PDF 731 KB
Kinetic Analysis of Bioluminescent Sources

Acquiring the most accurate quantitation of your bioluminescent sources requires a close understanding of the underlying kinetics involved in producing and capturing the detected light. After injection, the substrate for your bioluminescent probe will diffuse through the body of your subject eventually coming in contact with the luciferase enzyme in your target cells. In the case of Firefly luciferase, D-luciferin is catalyzed to oxyluciferin in the presence of ATP, Mg2+, and oxygen producing light as a consequence. It is this light that is measured and used to accurately quantify your samples in vivo. The diffusion of D-luciferin is dependent on several factors including but not limited to method of injection, metabolism, and tissue localization of your source.

Loading Groups of Images

For many studies, it may be desirable to open a group of images together, for example, analyzing multiple days of longitudinal study side by side using the same scale.

PDF 751 KB
Spectral Unmixing

This guide will walk you through the steps of manually entering your sequences for the spectral unmixing procedure. The Living Image 4.3.1 software version includes an Autoexposure setting and an Imaging Wizard. For questions on how to use these two features please see the respective quick reference guide associated with these workflows. You can also find information pertaining to the use of these features in the Spectral Unmixing Wizard Setup reference guide. These features are designed to make setting up your sequences as easy as possible and we highly recommend that you take advantage of them when performing these steps.

Subject ROI

Subject ROI using IVIS imaging systems

Transillumination 1 Setup

Transillumination is a 2D fluorescence imaging technique that utilizes an excitation light source located below the stage. Transillumination is superior to epi-illumination at detection of red-shifted, deep tissue fluorescent sources due to the transilluminator’s concentrated delivery of excitation light into the subject via a 2 mm beam and lower autofluorescence levels attained due to the position of the animal in relation to the excitation light.

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Transillumination 2 Raster Scan

In order to facilitate faster transillumination imaging, with Living Image 4, we have incorporated raster scanning capabilities. With raster scanning, the shutter remains open as the transillumination excitation source moves underneath the animal. This results in a single image and faster imaging times.,Note: This Transillumination Fluorescence – Raster Scan Tech Note was designed as a supplement to Transillumination Fluorescence Tech Note 14a. For information about setup of your 2D transillumination fluorescence sequences, please first consult that tech note.

Transillumination 3 Normalized

Normalized transmission fluorescence is a technique that allows us to subtract background light leakage through thin tissue from transillumination images utilizing an extra image captured with a neutral density (ND) filter. The ND filter dampens the intensity of the halogen lamp to 1/100th of the source intensity but does not filter out specific wavelengths. Light of all wavelengths is allowed to pass through the animal and the image is collected with the emission filter of your choice.

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Well Plate Quantification Library

Bioluminescence and Fluorescence tomography allows a user to determine not only the depth and anatomical localization of their source(s) but also the intensity of those sources expressed as either photons/second (DLIT) or total fluorescent yield (pmol/M cm) (FLIT). It is possible to extrapolate the number of cells in a DLIT source or the number of dye molecules or cells in a FLIT source if a quantification database is available. The database is derived from an analysis of images of known serial dilutions of luminescent or fluorescent cells, dye molecules, or labeled compounds.

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Working with Image Math

Working with Image Math. Image Math is a rudimentary but effective method for Spectrum and Lumina users to subtract background from images without performing Spectral Unmixing.

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Video Article


White Paper

Bioluminescence Resonance Energy Transfer (BRET) to Monitor Protein-Protein Interactions

The ability to image protein-protein interactions (PPIs) in vivo has important implications for a wide variety of biological research endeavors, including drug discovery and molecular medicine. The visual representation, characterization, quantification, and timing of these biological processes in living subjects can complement in vitro or cell culture methodologies.

Read this white paper to learn how bioluminescence resonance energy transfer (BRET) was used to monitor PPIs using non-invasive in vivo imaging.

Non-Invasive Optical Imaging for Viral Research and Novel Therapeutic and Vaccine Development

Viral diseases have emerged and re-emerged throughout history, and as the human population continues to increase globally, so will the frequency of viral pandemics. Not only have Ebola and COVID-19 demonstrated most recently mankind’s vulnerability to contagious diseases, but also the challenges we are faced with from a therapeutic standpoint.

Read how non-invasive optical imaging enables the most intricate host-pathogen interactions to be visualized and monitored in disease models that mimic what is seen in humans. Not only does optical imaging play an important role in better understanding the complex mechanisms of viral biology, it plays a vital role in the discovery and development of new drug and vaccine candidates.

The Role of In Vivo Imaging in Drug Discovery and Development

The primary goal of preclinical imaging is to improve the odds of clinical success and reduce drug discovery and development time and costs. Advances in non-invasive in vivo imaging techniques have raised the use of animal models in drug discovery and development to a new level by enabling quick and efficient drug screening and evaluation. Read this White Paper to learn how preclinical in vivo imaging helps to ensure that smart choices are made by providing Go/No-Go decisions and de-risking drug candidates early on, significantly reducing time to the clinic and lowering costs all while maximizing biological understanding.

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