Most mammalian cells grow at 35-37℃. If the temperature is not optimally controlled, the cell growth can be largely compromised. High temperature is more detrimental since it results in an immediate cell death. Therefore, maintaining the temperature within an optimal range is very important for cellular imaging. When the imaging with a high numeric aperture lens, it is necessary to control the temperature of the objective.
Correct pH is crucial for the cultured cells to maintain the normal physiological states and thus remains viable for a long time. The pH of the medium should be maintained around pH 7.4. The bicarbonate buffer system is the most widely used in the cell culture. The pH depends on the level of CO2. Thus, the CO2 level should be maintained during the cell imaging.
All incubator systems should maintain the internal humidity to prevent the medium evaporation. The evaporation causes the accumulation of the cell metabolites and medium constituents that will eventually impair the cell growth.