We are pleased to announce the winners of the Light Microscopy Australia Image Competition in 2019. This year’s competitions was open to ALL optical microscopists based in Australia.

This resulted in over 100 submissions across the four categories available (Live Cell Imaging, Life Sciences, In Vivo Imaging, Materials Sciences). Each category will award a $400 first prize and a $200 second prize. We would like to thank the sponsors of each category, Optiscan, Zeiss Australia and Nikon for their support of the competition.


Live Cell Category Winners
In Vivo Category Winners
Materials Science Category Winners



Proudly sponsored by Zeiss




1ST PRIZE: V. Pragathi Masamsetti, Children’s Medical Research Institute

The Intricacy of Life – Immunofluorescence of whole mount mouse embryo of age E11.5 was performed to stain for neurons (turquoise) and postmigratory neural crest cells (red). This image was obtained using Zeiss Spinning disk Confocal Microscope (10X objective). Multiple tile images and Z stacks were captured to cover the whole mouse embryo and were stitched together.

2ND PRIZE: Annalisa Paolino, Queensland Brain Institute

Neuronal triumph of colors – The neocortex is the most dorsal part of the mammalian brain which controls crucial functions, such as sensory integration, motor planning, social interaction, attention and learning. This important brain structure is formed by different populations of neurons, which are organised in layers and which send specific connections to other parts of the brain, depending on where they are localised within the neocortex. These different populations of necortical neurons express specific markers and can thus be specifically labelled with fluorescence immunohistochemistry.

Commendation: Ashley Rozario, Monash University

Candy Wrapping Microtubule Spindles – Single molecule super resolution microscopy (dSTORM) achieves spatial resolution as good as 20 nm in xy and 50 nm in z. Optical astigmatism using a cylindrical lens provides 1 um axial imaging depth. We acquire single molecule data from incremental z-steps up to 8 um and compile localizations for the resulting 3D image colour coded for depth. Here we use 3D dSTORM to visualize microtubule spindles in fixed COS-7 cells immunolabelled with Alexa Fluor 647, imaged on a home-built single molecule super resolution microscope setup based around an Olympus IX81 and Andor iXon EM-CCD.

Commendation: Kate Brody, The University of Melbourne

Cochlea in Three Dimensions – This a video of a guinea pig cochlea that has been implanted with a Cochlear Implant. It is co-labelled with Myosin VIIa which labels hair cells, NaKATPase which labels neuronal tissue and smooth muscle actin which labels arterioles and the myo-fibrotic tissue response to the implant. It has been clarified for imaging by lightsheet microscopy.

Commendation: Vinod Sundaramoorthy, CSIRO Australian Animal Health Laboratory

Neuronal galaxy – Mouse dorsal root ganglion (DRG) were isolated from 13 days old mouse embryos and cultured in laminin coated coverslips. These DRG neurons were cultured for 12 days and immunostained for MAP2 (dendrites, red), neurofilament (axons, green) and DAPI (nucleus, blue). Images were taken using confocal microscope as tile images with Z-stacks and then stitched together. The image represents effective ex-vivo modelling of neurons from the peripheral nervous system showing shorter dendrites in red and longer axons in green forming neuronal networks.

Commendation: Ellen Jarred, Hudson Institute of Medical Research

To Infinity and Beyond – Whole-mount mouse Cumulus-Oocyte-Complex (COC) visualised using immunofluorescent staining for DAPI (blue), Lamin B1 (green) and H3K27me3 (red). This image shows an oocyte surrounded by supporting cumulus cells. H3K27me3 is an epigenetic modification enriched in oocytes and is important for development in offspring. Lamin B1 marks the nuclear membrane. As these stains are nuclear, the large oocyte cytoplasm is unstained but is bordered by cumulus cells. Infinite possibilities lie ahead of every oocyte ‚How will the life of this individual unfold?




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