Electronic Flu

More electron microscopy! Except it’s only used as a background this time. A press release from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) describes work done by the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS) to visualize the influenza virus. The image above, in all its 30,625 pixels of glory, is the only one that appears with the press release, which I find surprising for such a visual result.

The image itself does a pretty good job. The two-dimensional, black-and-white background image stands in relief to the brightly-colored, three dimensional model of the virus. But gosh, it’s a tiny picture! And for such a spiffy result.

Also, the press release states: “The research team used electron tomography (ET) to make its discovery. ET is a novel, three-dimensional imaging method based on the same principle as the well-known clinical imaging technique called computerized axial tomography, but it is performed in an electron microscope on a microminiaturized scale.” It’s probably worth saying that computerized axial tomography is more familiarly known as a CAT scan. Just sayin’…