Nikon Small World 2011

Every year, Nikon hosts the Small World Photomicrography Competition, inviting photographers and scientists to submit images of all things visible under a microscope. The winners for this year's competition have just been announced, with Dr. Igor Siwanowicz taking first prize for his image of a common green lacewing larva that had earlier landed on his hand, trying to take a bite (photo number 21 below). This year's entries cover a fascinating range of subjects and sizes, from the eyes of a freshwater shrimp to the delicate scales on the wing of a butterfly, from a simple yet complex frost crystal to neurospheres and cancer cells. Enjoy a trip into a miniature world through the images shared here with us by the fine folks at Nikon, all from the 2011 Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition. [32 photos total]

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This image of an ant's head, viewed from the front (at 10X) took 11th place in the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition. The ant's autofluorescence was observed using confocal micrsocopy by Dr. Jan Michels of Christian-Albrechts-Universitat zu Kiel, in Kiel, Germany. (Dr. Jan Michels) #
Dr. Douglas Clark of San Francisco, California submitted this image of the dried wing scales of a butterfly (Cethosia biblis) in incandescent light. (Dr. Douglas Clark) #
HeLa cancer cells viewed at 300x are seen in this 12th Place image by Thomas Deerinck from the National Center for Microscopy and Imaging Research in La Jolla, California. HeLa is an immortal cell line used in scientific research, made of cells originally sampled from cancer patient Henrietta Lacks in 1951. (Thomas Deerinck) #
The eye of a live giant waterflea (Leptodora kindtii), observed and submitted by Wim van Egmond of the Micropolitan Museum in Rotterdam, Netherlands. (Wim van Egmond) #
Taking 4th place in the competition, Dr. Robin Young of the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, British Columbia used intrinsic fluorescence to observe this specimen of liverwort (Lepidozia reptans) at 20x. (Dr. Robin Young) #
Crystal twinning patterns in a leucite crystal from volcanic rock, observed in polarized light by Dr. Michael M. Raith of the Steinmann Institut, University of Bonn, Bonn, Germany. (Dr. Michael M. Raith) #
A water flea (Daphnia sp.) among green algae (Volvox sp.), an image by Dr. Ralf Wagner of Düsseldorf, Germany. (Dr. Ralf Wagner) #
Pekka Honkakoski of Iisalmi, Finland captured this image of a rare column snowflake with thin, knifelike ice extensions, lit in part by red and blue lighting from opposite sides. (Pekka Honkakoski) #
The embryonic pectoral fin of Chiloscyllium plagiosum, the Whitespotted bamboo shark, observed by Dr. Andrew Gillis, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK. (Dr. Andrew Gillis) #
Taking 20th place was Douglas Moore of the University of Wisconsin - Stevens Point in Stevens Point, Wisconsin. Moore's entry shows unpolished agatized dinosaur bone cells, fossilized cellular structure from an animal that lived some 150 million years ago, viewed at 42x. (Douglas Moore) #
Charles Krebs from Issaquah, Washington brings us this portrait of a water boatman (Corixidae sp.), viewed in reflected light. (Charles Krebs) #
Primary rat neurons grown as neurospheres, observed by Dr. Rowan Orme of Keele University, Keele, UK. (Dr. Rowan Orme) #
The double compound eyes of a male St. Mark's fly (Bibio marci), submitted by Dr. David Maitland from Feltwell, UK. (Dr. David Maitland) #
A naturally formed frost crystal that had grown overnight on a fence in -15 degrees C weather. Image from Jesper Grønne of Silkeborg, Denmark. (Jesper Grønne) #
A fish louse (Argulus), viewed at 60x by Wim van Egmond of the Micropolitan Museum in Rotterdam, Netherlands. (Wim van Egmond) #
Dr. Torsten Wittmann of the University of California, San Fransisco, submitted this image of bovine pulmonary artery endothelial (BPAE) cells fixed and stained for actin, mitochondria, and DNA. (Dr. Torsten Wittmann) #
A closeup view of a velvet mite (Eutrombidium rostratus) by Dr. David Maitland from Feltwell, UK. (Dr. David Maitland) #
Debora Leite of the University of Sao Paulo, in Sao Paulo, Brazil observed this cross-section of the structure of a sugarcane root. (Debora Leite) #
Taking 10th place is this 100x view of a freshwater water flea (Daphnia magna), submitted by Joan Röhl of the Institute for Biochemistry and Biology in Potsdam, Germany. (Joan Röhl) #
James H. Nicholson of the Coral Culture and Collaborative Research Facility, NOAA/NOS/NCCOS/CCEHBR & HML in Charleston, South Carolina took 15th Place with this image of lobe coral (Porites lobata), displaying tissue pigmentation response with red fluorescence at 12x. (James H. Nicholson) #
The 1st place winner, a portrait of a green lacewing (Chrysopa sp.) larva (20x) by Dr. Igor Siwanowicz of the Max Planck Institute of Neurobiology in Martinsried, Germany. (Dr. Igor Siwanowicz) #
Benjamin Blonder, David Elliott took 18th place for their image of the venation network of a young quaking aspen (Populus tremuloides) leaf. Blonder and Elliott are from the University of Arizona in Tucson, Arizona. (Benjamin Blonder, David Elliott) #
Dr. Havi Sarfaty of the Israeli Veterinary Association in Ramat-Gan, Israel, brings us this closeup of the mouth of a common fly. (Dr. Havi Sarfaty) #
Jonathan Franks of the University of Pittsburgh in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, used autofluorescence to observe this algae biofilm. (Jonathan Franks) #
The head and eye of a freshwater shrimp, observed by Jose R. Almodovar of the Microscopy Center, Biology Department, UPR Mayaguez Campus, in Mayaguez, Puerto Rico. (Jose R. Almodovar) #
At 17th Place is this 150x view of parasitic filaria worms (Litomosoides sigmodontis) nestled inside lymphatic vessels of a mouse's ear. Immge by Dr. Witold Kilarski of the EPFL-Laboratory of Lymphatic and Cancer Bioengineering in Lausanne, Switzerland. (Dr. Witold Kilarski) #
Winning 2nd place is this 200x autofluorescent view of a blade of grass by Dr. Donna Stolz of the University of Pittsburgh in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Dr. Donna Stolz) #
Using laser-triggered high-speed macrophotography, Dr. John H. Brackenbury of the University of Cambridge in Cambridge, UK, captured this image of a water droplet containing a pair of mosquito larvae. (Dr. John H. Brackenbury) #
Frank Fox of the Fachhochschule Trier in Trier, Germany took 3rd place with this image of a living specimen of Melosira moniliformis. (Frank Fox) #
A three dimensional view of a cell culture of breast cancer cells, by Dr. Jonatas Bussador do Amaral and Dr. Gláucia Maria Machado Santelli of the University of São Paulo in São Paulo, Brazil. (Dr. Jonatas Bussador do Amaral, Dr. Gláucia Maria Machado Santelli) #
The tip of a butterfly tongue viewed in polarized light by Stephen S. Nagy, M.D. from Helena, Montana. (Stephen S. Nagy, M.D.) #
The anterior lateral and median eyes of a jumping spider, observed by Walter Piorkowski of South Beloit, Illinois. (Walter Piorkowski) #

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