In order to correlate structure with function in a moving cell it is essential to know the state of movement at the time of fixation. This can be achieved by performing live cell imaging and electron microscopy on the same cell (Auinger and Small, 2008).
Briefly, cells are grown on a thin plastic film cast on a glass coverslip. The cells can be imaged live in the fluorescence microscope and fixed directly on the microscope stage during a video sequence. Thereafter, the plastic film is peeled off the coverslip, transferred to an EM grid and negatively stained for electron microscopy. Re-location of the cell observed in the light microscope in the EM is facilitated by embossing an indexed grid pattern in gold onto the plastic film.