The history of optical microscopy was started by van Leeuwenhoek, who discovered microorganisms for the first time in the world. Even at that time, the most essential powers of the optical microscopy were high spatial resolution, high sensitivity, and detection of motion. In this small review, we will recall how these three powers of optical microscopy have extended biophysical sciences. Detection and analysis of the individuality, distribution, dynamics, and history in the biological scales from single molecules to cells and tissues were the major roles of the optical microscopy. These roles inevitably lead optical microscopy to proceed toward the computational sciences.
2015 by THE BIOPHYSICAL SOCIETY OF JAPAN