Cookies on this website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Accept all cookies' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. If you click 'Reject all non-essential cookies' only necessary cookies providing core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility will be enabled. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

We report a substantial signal gain in fluorescence microscopy by ensuring that transient molecular dark states with lifetimes >1 micros, such as the triplet state relax between two molecular absorption events. For GFP and Rhodamine dye Atto532, we observed a 5-25-fold increase in total fluorescence yield before molecular bleaching when strong continuous-wave or high-repetition-rate pulsed illumination was replaced with pulses featuring temporal pulse separation >1 micros. The signal gain was observed both for one- and two-photon excitation. Obeying dark or triplet state relaxation in the illumination process signifies a major step toward imaging with low photobleaching and strong fluorescence fluxes.

Original publication




Journal article


Nat Methods

Publication Date





81 - 86


Green Fluorescent Proteins, Microscopy, Fluorescence, Rhodamines, Sensitivity and Specificity