Image Prize

Research in Imaging Facility

Each year members of the Institute can put forward images for the Imaging Prize, usually created using the Institute's Imaging Facility.
The winner is selected by everyone in the Institute through a public vote.

2023 Winner

Image of a drosophila gut, a long winding squiggle made up of blue and white dots.

"Gut's feelings" 

Aurora Xu's image shows the Drosophila gut, the structure that is equivalent to the human small intestine. Cells were stained for DAPI (marks the nucleus in blue) and phosphorylated Mad (pMad, marked in white), which is the transcription factor that becomes phosphorylated upon Dpp (the Drosophila BMP) pathway activation. The Dpp pathway forms gradients in the fly gut to maintain its tissue patterning and homeostasis.

2022 Winner

Human embryo-like structures derived from human embryonic stem cells (blastoid) that form balls of cells with an inside cavity that look very much like blackberries.

"Blackberry field"

Irene Zorzan and Teresa Rayon's image of human embryo-like structures derived from human embryonic stem cells (blastoids) that form balls of cells with an inside cavity that look very much like blackberries. Blue marks all nuclei of the structure, the green label marks the cells that will generate the embryo proper (Nanog), and the pink label is a readout of a ribosomal protein (pS6).

2021 Winner

C. elegans image prize 2021

Laetitia Chauve’s image, with support by Simon Walker and Chieko Itakura from the Institute’s Imaging facility. This picture is a scanning electron micrograph of the head of an adult C. elegans worm magnified by 7,190 times. The raw image is greyscale but has been coloured post-image capture to highlight the six symmetrical inner lips (yellow/red) surrounding the opening of the mouth and the amphids (primary chemosensory organs; blue). Debris and/or bacteria (which C. elegans eat) have been coloured purple. Laetitia, a member of the former Casaneuva lab, studied C. elegans to investigate the link between diet and ageing.

2020 winner

Intestinal organoids

Katie Young's image depicts a mouse intestinal organoid stained for actin (red), nuclei (blue), smooth muscle actin (green) and beta catenin (white). The Sharpe lab uses organoids to study the role of phosphatases in the gut. The organoid on the right shows several crypts which have developed from the mouse intestinal stem cells.

2019 Winner

C elegans

Célia Raimondi’s image of colourful C. elegans. The image shows DNA staining (DAPI) of a mutant strain of Caenorhabditis elegansC.elegans, a tiny nematode worm, is one of the model systems used at the Institute to investigate the biology of ageing. The image has been modified for colour using the ImageJ image processing software.

2018 Winner

Laetitia wormsThis year's winning image is by Laetitia Chauve and shows C. elegans worms labelled with a fluorescent protein and imaged using a confocal microscope. C. elegans is a really useful system for our research because we can monitor fluorescent reporters of gene expression in vivo and study inter-individual variability in stress response gene expression in isogenic individuals.

The Image was produced with the help of Simon Walker in the Institute's Imaging facility.

2017 Winner


Image prize 2017

This image shows the lining of the large intestine. DNA in the cell nuclei is shown in red. Histone-crotonylation, an epigenetic mark involved in gene activation, is shown in green. Yellow indicates colocalization of both stainings.
Juri Kazakevych

2016 Winner


MArissa image prize submission 2016

This is a cross-section through a mouse’s colonic epithelium. It is folded into so-called crypts to form a large surface area for the absorption of water and nutrients, and is covered by a protective mucous layer. This layer is secreted by goblet cells which are shown in red.  These cells are crammed with mucins, proteins which make up the protective mucus and which were stained for using red fluorescent antibodies. (blue = DAPI staining nuclei, green = anti-EpCAM antibodies staining the cell membrane of epithelial cells)
Marisa Stebegg

2015 Winner


Muscle fibre - Emma Robinson

A cross section of left ventricle of an adult rat heart. Cardiac muscle fibre actinin is in red, identifying the muscle cells from fibroblasts. In addition, cardiac myocyte nuclei have a ring of green around their periphery. This is pericentriolar material-1 and is used to isolate myocyte nuclei from a total heart nuclear extraction. All nuclei are stained in blue.
Emma Robinson