The image above shows a live zebrafish embryo only 22 hours after fertilisation. Taken using a technique called light sheet microscopy that uses a narrow plane of laser light to illuminate a sample sliver by sliver, the image reveals the early morphogenetic development of the embryo at the level of single cells.
The nuclei of the embryo’s cells were labelled with fluorescent markers and the different colours show here encode depth.
By the time the embryo reaches 36 hours of age, all of the major organs will have started to form. The zebrafish’s rapid growth and see-through embryo make it ideal for scientists studying how organs develop.
Curated content from the editorial staff at Cosmos Magazine.
Read science facts, not fiction...
There’s never been a more important time to explain the facts, cherish evidence-based knowledge and to showcase the latest scientific, technological and engineering breakthroughs. Cosmos is published by The Royal Institution of Australia, a charity dedicated to connecting people with the world of science. Financial contributions, however big or small, help us provide access to trusted science information at a time when the world needs it most. Please support us by making a donation or purchasing a subscription today.