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  • Kirk Hartley

Scientists (and Someday, Jurors) Now Able to Watch Some Forms of Life Develop from Moment One &#82

Wow ! This article from the Howard Hughes Institute explains – and shows images from – new microscopes that can watch and record the evolution of life as cells begin dividing at moment one. This technology did not exist two years ago, but now it exists and works well. Go here to see video of the process, and video generated from the process.

According to the article, this technology will soon be commercially available. Imagine the uses. One might be to compare the evolution of creatures with and without genetic damage. Who will need epidemiology if cause and effect can be osberved and recorded ?

Here are key excerpts:

"Using the new set-up, Keller’s team captured zebrafish development for 58 hours, generating a microscopy data set that comprises one million high-resolution images, as well as early development of a fly embryo. Reconstructing cell positions in the live fly recording by automated computer algorithms allowed the scientist to create a Digital Fly Embryo. It will be easy to implement the technique in other developing animals, he says, because the striped patterns can be adjusted during the experiments to get the maximum amount of information from the changing embryo.

Keller says that the technology will be commercially available soon, making it possible to get a systems-level understanding of how cells are behaving and interacting with each other and forming the various different tissues and organs in an organism. Multiple levels of molecular biology, such as genes and proteins, can be examined in real time in the context of the entire developing embryo."


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