(this article was originally published in the fruit shell)
on October 21, 2019, the Nikon Little World Microphotography Award (Nikon's Small World) announced the list of winners for the new year. What different scenery did the contestants find under the microscope this time? Let's take a look at it.
first place: fluorescent turtle embryo (5 times magnification)
photographer: Teresa Zgoda, Teresa Kugler
A fluorescent tortoise embryo won the championship of this competition. As microscope technicians, Teresa Zgoda and Teresa Kugler completed this fluorescence microphotograph while helping students complete the embryology course. This picture was not taken at once, and the embryo sample is quite large (more than 2.5 centimeters long) and cannot be fully displayed in the field of vision. What we see is actually the result of hundreds of pictures stitched together. Embryos are stained to distinguish between different tissues.
second place: trumpet worms (objective lens 40 times magnification)
photographer: Dr. Igor Siwanowicz
the second place was won by veteran Igor Siwanowicz of the "small World" competition, who photographed three trumpet worms (Stentor, a class of ciliates). Trumpet worms are single-celled freshwater protozoa. Igor Siwanowicz used a confocal microscope to clearly record the details of their cilia, which are used by these small creatures to feed and move.
third place: Crocodile embryo (objective lens 10 times magnification)
photographer: Daniel Smith Paredes, Dr. Bhart-Anjan S. Bhullar
of course, when it comes to embryo microphotos, I like the following zebrafish best:
this is the winner of the 2016 "Little World" competition, from Oscar Ruiz, taken through a confocal microscope. Note: what looks like an eye in front is its nostril, and the real eye is on the side.
here are some other finalists in this competition.
Snowflake (objective lens 4 times magnification)
photographer: the crystal form of Caleb Foster
ice determines the structure of the six branches of snowflake. Careful observation shows slight differences in the growth of ice crystals on each branch. Snowflakes are formed by water vapor sublimation, and their morphology is largely determined by ambient temperature and humidity. The work won the fifth place in this competition.
Cell division (63-fold magnification of objective lens)
photographer: Jason M. Kirk
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this confocal microscopic image shows bovine pulmonary artery endothelial cells (BPAE cells) at the end of mitosis.
chalcopyrite (objective lens 20 times magnification)
photographer: Dr. Emilio Carabajal M á rquez
the chemical composition of Cuprite is cuprous oxide (Cu2O). These minerals can form cubic, octahedral or dodecahedral crystal forms. The tiny crystals in the picture may have been formed by lava evaporating part of the underground copper deposit. Although it has a beautiful crimson color, chalcopyrite crystals are not hard enough and are rarely made into gem ornaments. The work won the 13th place in this competition.
mosquito larvae (objective lens 4 times magnification)
photographers: Anne Algar
mosquito larvae living in water show clear details and slightly strange colors under the action of dark field and polarized light.
Water flea (objective lens 4 times magnification)
photographer: Marek Mi flea
this is a female water flea whose eggs can be observed behind its belly. This image uses polarized light and is taken in a dark field. These small invertebrates are very common in fresh water. The work won the 15th place in this competition.
small octopus (objective lens 5 times magnification)
photographer: Martyna Lukoseviciute, Dr. Carrie Albertin
this is a developing Octopus bimaculoides embryo that has been artificially stained to show different tissues. Photographing octopus embryos is part of the work of marine biologist Carrie Albertin, who studies how these cephalopods grow into their eccentric bodies. The work won the 19th place in this competition.
Vascular network (objective lens 2 times magnification)
photographer: Simon Merz, Lea Bornemann, Sebastian Korste
this is the cardiac blood vessel of an experimental mouse who has experienced myocardial infarction, using optical fluorescence microscopic imaging (Light Sheet Fluorescence Microscopy).) shooting. We were able to see the vascular network clearly because the sample was treated with tissue transparency. The work won the 20th place in this competition.
photographer: Jan van IJken
what looks like a small fan is a group of Licmophora flabellata, a kind of diatom that lives in the ocean.
spores (63 times magnification of the objective lens)
photographer: Dr. Tagide deCarvalho
this photo shows the spores of Penicillium and is photographed by confocal microscope.
Phantom crystals (objective lens 4 times magnification)
photographers: Justin Zoll
what we see here are some amino acid crystals-L-glutamine and β-alanine to be exact. The photos are taken with a polarizing microscope, so you can see the dreamy colors.
retina (objective lens 40 times magnification)
photographers: Dr. Wen Shen
optic nerve fibers and ganglion cells in the retina of mice were photographed by confocal microscope.
bearing (objective lens 5x magnification)
photographer: Dr. Haris Antonopoulos
this photo shows a bearing from a mechanical watch, photographed by differential interference phase contrast microscope (Differential Interference Contrast).