We are pleased to announce the winners of the LMA/VIA 2021 Image Competition.

This resulted in over 160 submissions across the si x categories Live Cell Imaging, Life Sciences, In Vivo Imaging, Materials Sciences, Super Resolution and Volume Imaging).

Each category awards a $400 first prize and a $200 second prize. We would like to thank the sponsors of each category, New Spec, Zeiss Australia, OptiScan , John Morris Group and Nikon Australia for their support of the competition.

Please follow the links below to see this years winners.

Life Science Category Winners
In Vivo Category Winners
Materials Science Category Winners
Super Resolution Category Winners
Volume Imaging Category Winners


Proudly sponsored by New Spec

1ST PRIZE: Krystyna Gieniec – UNSW

Oxytocin-Induced Calcium Signals are Required for Milk Ejection During
Lactation. This video demonstrates how oxytocin stimulates the rapid increase of
calcium ions in the cytosol (yellow) of epithelial, star-shaped basal cells (magenta)
that encircle each alveolar unit in a gestating mammary gland. The calcium fluxes are
oscillatory and result in cellular contraction, which is known to be essential for milk
ejection. This mammary gland was harvested from a mouse expressing a genetically
encoded calcium indicator (GCaMP6f) in K5-positive basal cells at gestation day 15.5.
Fast ex vivo imaging of the live tissue was achieved using the Leica SP8 confocal
microscope. The z-stacks were combined into this final video in ImageJ.


2ND PRIZE: Nicholas Condon – UQ

Hypercolour Live Imaging. This composite render of immune cells (macrophages;
expressing GFP-LifeAct) ruffling and sampling their environment highlights the rapid
and changing movement of the cell’s plasma membrane. Originally captured on a
lattice light-sheet microscope over 5 minutes with a temporal resolution of
approximately 1 second, frames have been re-coloured into blocks of 20 seconds,
with a rolling frame average added leaving a coloured ‘shadow’ of the cell’s
movement. This visualisation was created with a custom script to create new
visualisation techniques for complex data-sets generated on modern light



Elysa Carr – Florey Institute of Neuroscince and Mental Health

Thought Highways. For neurons to communicate efficiently, neurotransmitters must be released from synaptic vesicles in a process called exocytosis. This two minute time-lapse depicts cultured mouse hippocampal neurons being electrically stimulated, triggering exocytosis. The cells express pHluorin, a pH-sensitive GFP reporter, which is tagged to the synaptic vesicle protein VAMP2. The long neuronal processes form highways and the protein moves along like traffic. Some points along the neurons become brighter over time as pHluorin fluoresces more brightly upon exocytosis – the change in brightness indicates that the neurons are communicating. This time-lapse was captured with a Zeiss Axio Observer Z.1 epifluorescence microscope at 40x magnification.



Silke Chalmers – UQ

A Sudden Brainwave. Intercellular calcium signal communication underpins essential central nervous system functioning, but is difficult to observe in human neural cells due to technical challenges. To capture this phenomenon in real-time in the brain, neural matrices consisting of human neurons and astrocytes were developed through progenitor cells differentiation. Matrices were loaded with fluorescent calcium indicator fluo-4 and imaged using an automated epi-fluorescent microscope (ImageXpress) at 10x objective. Calcium influx was selectively induced in a small region using automated mechanical stimulation. The following calcium cascade is the result of intercellular communication between neurons and astrocytes
– a stimulated, sudden brainwave in action.




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