Exhibit of Colorful Microscope Images to Open at Miner Library

March 26, 2008

Olympus BioScapes Digital Imaging Competition winning photo by Sonja Pyott

An exhibit of award-winning photographs — intricate, brilliantly colored images of plant, animal and human subjects captured through light microscopes — will open April 1 in the Edward G. Miner Library in the University of Rochester Medical Center.

The 20 images in the exhibit won top honors in the Olympus BioScapes Digital Imaging Competition, a major forum for showcasing microscope photos and videos of life science subjects.

The Miner Library will exhibit the photos through April. The exhibit is free and open to the public.

More than a thousand images were entered in the Olympus contest. The exhibit at Miner Library includes the top-prize winner, an image of axons in a mouse’s brain stem by Jean Livet, Ph.D., of Harvard University.

The image, captured through a confocal microscope, was made using the “Brainbow” technique that was developed at Harvard. It allows scientists to see more clearly how neurons connect with each other through the complex and intertwined pathways of the nervous system. Each neuron is colored by a distinct combination of red, yellow and cyan fluorescent proteins. The technique allows the three colors to combine in different cells to produce a wide variety of resulting hues.

“This winning image reflects the awesome intricacy and beauty of the natural world and it shows how much science and fine art can echo one another,” said Stephen Tang, Ph.D., group vice president and general manager, life science, for Olympus America. “But the most exciting thing about these images is the vital stories they tell about our quest to cure disease and enhance life.”

The exhibit also includes images of the inner ear, brain cells, rat and hen tongues and plants.

The Miner Library is open Monday to Thursday from 7:30 a.m. to midnight, Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 10 p.m., Saturday from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m., and Sunday from 10 a.m. to midnight.

The Olympus BioScapes competition is in its fourth year. The first-prize winner received Olympus equipment valued at $5,000.

To view all the winning images, go to http://www.olympusbioscapes.com

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