We, like all complex animals, begin to take shape in a hive of cellular industry called the embryo. As development progresses, cells in different regions of the embryo take on special roles and eventually become our tissues, organs and limbs. The video shows the embryo of a fruit fly (Drosophila) developing into a larva. Taken with Multi-View Selective-Plane Illumination Microscopy (MuVi-SPIM), this new technique involves shining a thin sheet of light on the embryo and quickly taking four images of the embryo from different angles. Combining the images to give one 3D view shows every cell’s movements within the embryo, helping scientists better understand exactly how organisms develop.
Written by Sai Pathmanathan
BPoD stands for Biomedical Picture of the Day. Managed by the MRC London Institute of Medical Sciences the website aims to engage everyone, young and old, in the wonders of biomedicine. Images are kindly provided for inclusion on this website through the generosity of scientists across the globe.