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Looking inside the cell: The Biochemist, October issue


The latest issue of The Biochemist is all about live cell imaging. Articles range from studying whole embryos - using an entirely new technique - to tracking individual molecules: all this, and a broadside on the honesty of images in the digital age. Comment, reviews, days out - something for everyone in the October Biochemist.

Single molecule detection

By Laurent Groc, Daniel Choquet, Brahim Lounis and Laurent Cognet
Over the last decade, Single-Molecule Detection (SMD) gave biologists a tool to turn their dream to follow single molecule in live cells into reality.

The b-cell at work

By Guy A. Rutter
A better understanding of how the b-cell works is of paramount importance in combating this “diabetes epidemic”. One approach is that of imaging the b-cell at work, releasing insulin.

Studying live embryos in 4-D

By Jan Huisken
Selective Plane Illumination Microscopy offers an alternative way of optically sectioning the sample in fluorescence microscopy. By illuminating the sample with a sheet of light, a sectioning effect can be obtained that is similar to that in confocal microscopy but with extra advantages. The technique performs especially well in large samples such as fish or fly embryos, which can be observed alive for several days.

Digital images in science

By Alan Entwistle
Almost all scientific images are now collected and saved as digital data rather than physical, making it far easier to alter their contents. This has led researchers to question what is valid practice and what is inappropriate manipulation of image data. Some have even proposed that there should be rigid rules but here it is argued that this is excessively restrictive and will do nothing to curb fraudulent practices.

Faster, surer prediction

By Alan J Monk
As many as 60% of investigational new drugs fail in the later preclinical and clinical phases of development because of unsatisfactory absorption, distribution, metabolism, excretion and / or toxicity characteristics. This article looks at automated microscopy and imaging as a useful screening tool in early stage drug discovery.

All this plus Claire Bithell of the Science Media Centre on the challenge of science in the media, book reviews and exhibition reports.

Mark Burgess | alfa
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