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Mouse Brain or Impressionist Painting?
Date:11/13/2007

Photo Reflecting Pioneering Scientific Technique Wins Olympus BioScapes

International Competition

CENTER VALLEY, Pa., Nov. 13 /PRNewswire/ -- A rainbow of brilliantly colored brain cells that was captured using a breakthrough new scientific technique has earned top prize in the 2007 Olympus BioScapes Digital Imaging Competition, the world's foremost forum for showcasing microscope photos and videos of life science subjects. Jean Livet of Harvard University took top honors for a "Brainbow" image of axons in a mouse's brain stem. The cascading canvas of color, captured through a confocal microscope, resembles a vivid impressionist painting. Dr. Livet's image triumphed over a thousand other images and movies to earn the First Prize -- $5000 worth of Olympus equipment.

(Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20071113/NYTU047 )

In its fourth year, the Olympus BioScapes competition is the world's premier platform for honoring images and videos of plant, animal and human subjects as captured through light microscopes. Any life science subject is eligible, and entries are judged based on the science they depict, their aesthetics (beauty and impact of the image), and their technical merit. This year, in addition to Prizes 1-10, 63 other images and movies were recognized with honorable mentions. All images and the names of all honorees may be viewed online at http://www.olympusbioscapes.com.

The "Brainbow" technique, recently developed in Dr. Jeff Lichtman's laboratory at Harvard, is a method that 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. Similar to how an RGB television set works, the
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SOURCE Olympus BioScapes
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