Laboratory of Michael Shribak

Michael ShribakmicroscopyMichael I. Shribak, Associate Scientist

Phone (508) 289-7242
Complete Publication List


Gallery of micrographs obtained with our microscopy techniques (21 pictures):

Neonatal Rat hippocampal neurons, ), quantitative phase image (OI-DIC microscope)
Crane Fly Nephrotoma suturalis spermatocyte, combined birefringence & phase images
Diatom Arachnoidiscus, interference image (Jamin-Lebedev microscope)
Breast cancer tissue with collagenous stroma, birefringence image (polarized light microscope)
Diatom Arachnoidiscus, birefringence image (polarized light microscope)
Bacterium Herpetosiphon aurantiacus (Chloroflexi), quantitative phase image (OI-DIC microscope)
Rotifer Adineta vaga, birefringence image (polarized light microscope)
MFM diffraction grating, image size 90x67µm, quantitative phase gradient image (OI-DIC microscope)
Diatoms Pleurosigma, birefringence image (polarized light microscope)
Pluteus larva of Sea Urchin Arbacia punctulata
Rotifer Philodina roseola, birefringence image (polarized light microscope)
Crane Fly Nephrotoma suturalis spermatocyte, quantitative phase image (OI-DIC microscope)
Aster consisting of microtubules (polarized light microscope)
Calcite crystal film, birefringence image (polarized light microscope)
Rotifer Adineta vaga, birefringence image (polarized light microscope)
Zebrafish embryo, birefringence image (polarized light microscope)
4µ-thick glass rods, quantitative phase gradient image (OI-DIC microscope)
Drying water film, quantitative phase gradient image (OI-DIC microscope)
Calanoid copepod Oithona similis, birefringence image (polarized light microscope)
Mouse coronal brain stem, birefringence image (polarized light microscope)
Aster, 3D orienation birefringence image (polarized light microscope)

© Please do not reproduce or distribute images without permission. Copyright holders: Michael Shribak and mentioned coauthors

Elena Iourieva, Research Assistant


My research focuses on developing advanced optical microscopic imaging tools for applications in biological and clinical research. These new imaging modes allow users to observe and record living cells with extremely fine details, some of which have never been seen with any other mode of microscopy before.

I received BS./MS. in optical physics from Lviv National University, Lviv, Ukraine and Ph.D. in Optics from Moscow University of Geodesy and Cartography, Moscow, Russia. Since working at the MBL since 2000, I have invented several new quantitative light microscope modalities, which non-invasively create contrast where structures are otherwise invisible. Our current project “Orientation independent DIC and polarization microscopy” is supported by NIH (R01GM101701).


Quantitative orientation independent DIC microscopy

Polychromatic polarization microscopy

Selected peer-reviewed articles:

  • J.E. Malamy, M. Shribak*, “High resolution imaging of epithelial cell migration and wound healing in a Cnidarian model using an orientation-independent DIC microscope” Journal of Microscopy, vol. 270, No. 3, p. 290-301 (2018).
  • R. Imai, T. Nozaki, T. Tani, K. Hibino, S. Idea, S. Tamura, K. Takahashi, M. Shribak*, K. Maeshima*, “Density” imaging of heterochromatin in live mouse cells using OI-DIC microscopy”, Molecular Biology of the Cell, vol. 28, No. 23, p. 3349-3359 (2017).
  • M. Shribak*, K. Larkin, D. Biggs, “Mapping of optical path length and image enhancement using orientation-independent differential interference contrast microscopy”, Journal of Biomedical Optics, vol. 22, No. 1, 16006 (2017)
  • M. Shribak, “Polychromatic polarization microscope: bringing colors to a colorless world”, Nature/ Scientific Reports, 5, 17340 (2015).
  • M. Shribak, “Quantitative orientation-independent DIC microscope with fast switching shear direction and bias modulation”, The Journal of the Optical Society of America A, vol.30, No.4, p.769-782 (2013)
  • M. Shribak, “Complete polarization state generator with one variable retarder and its application for fast and sensitive measuring of two-dimensional birefringence distribution”, The Journal of the Optical Society of America A, vol.28, No.3, p.410-419 (2011).
  • M. Shribak*, J. LaFountain, D. Biggs, S. Inoué, “Orientation-independent differential interference contrast (DIC) microscopy and its combination with orientation-independent polarization system”, Journal of Biomedical Optics, vol. 13, No.1, 14011 (2008).
  • M. Shribak*, S. Inoué, “Orientation-Independent Differential Interference Contrast Microscopy”, Applied Optics, vol. 45, No.3, p. 460-469 (2006).
  • M. Shribak*, R. Oldenbourg, “Techniques for fast and sensitive measurements of two-dimensional birefringence distributions”, Applied Optics, vol. 42, No.16, p. 3009-3017 (2003).
  • S. Inoué*, O. Shimomura, M. Goda, M. Shribak, P.T. Tran, “Fluorescence polarization of green fluorescence protein”, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA, vol.99, No.7, p.4272 – 4277 (2002).
  • M. Shribak*, S. Inoué, R. Oldenbourg, “Polarization aberrations caused by differential transmission and phase shift in high NA lenses: theory, measurement and rectification”, Optical Engineering, vol. 41, No. 5, p.943-954, (2002).
  • (*corresponding authors)

Selected patents:

  • M. Shribak, “Polychromatic polarization state generator and its application for real-time birefringence imaging”, US Patent #9,625,369 (2017).
  • M. Shribak, “Orientation-independent differential interference contrast microscopy technique and device”, US Patents #7,564,618 (2009), and #7,233,434 (2007).
  • M. Shribak, and R. Oldenbourg “Retardance measurement system and method”, US Patents #7,372,567 (2007), #7,239,388 (2007), #7,202,950 (2007).
  • M. Shribak, R. Oldenbourg, P.J. Cronin, C.C. Hoyt, and P.J. Miller “Instantaneous polarization measurement system and method”, US Patent #7,079,247 (2006).
  • R. Oldenbourg, M. Shribak, C. Hoyt, and P. Torok “Enhancing polarized light microscopy”, US Patent #6,924,893, (2003).
  • M. I. Shribak “Apparatus for measuring birefringence”, Patents of the USSR #1,431,484, (1986), #1,414,097 (1986), #1,390,636 (1985), #1,290,091 (1985), #1,290,090 (1985), #1,282,202 (1985).

Selected book chapters:

  • M. Shribak, “Polarization” (revised). In: Handbook of Optical Metrology: Principles and Applications, 2nd edition (ed. T. Yoshizawa), CRC Press, Boca Raton, FL, USA, pp. 373-388 (2015).
  • M. Shribak, “Differential interference contrast microscopy”. In: Biomedical Optical Phase Microscopy and Nanoscopy (eds. N. T. Shaked, Z. Zalevsky and L. L. Satterwhite), Elsevier, (2012).
  • R. Oldenbourg, and M. Shribak, “Microscopes”. In: Handbook of Optics, Third Edition, Volume I: Geometrical and Physical Optics, Polarized Light, Components and Instruments (ed. Michael Bass), McGraw-Hill Professional, (2010).

Selected image awards:

2017: The first prize in the 2017 After Image photo contest of journal Optics and Photonics News. ( )

2017: Director of the NIH Dr. Francis S. Collins highlighted the polychromatic polarization techniques in the weekly NIH Director’s Blog:

2012: Two Images of Distinction in the Nikon’s Small World International Photomicrography Competition (

2011: The first prize in the MBL Scientific Photography Contest (

2010: One award for the Technical Merit and 3 Honorable Mentions in the Olympus BioScapes International Digital Imaging competition (

Selected movies: