"[Our philosopher] asserted that he knew the whole secret...[H]e surveyed the two celestial strangers from top to toe, and mantained to their faces that their persons, their worlds, their suns and their stars, were created solely for the use of man. At this assertion our two travelers let themselves fall against each other, seized with a fit of...inextinguishable laughter"
-- Voltaire (1752)
Hello all. My name is Lu. This is a science blog, on a microscopic and astronomical scale (and a combination of both--extraterrestrials!). I'm biology student, pretty much in love with the universe.
Message for URL to my personal Tumblr.
New Star System Similar to Ours —“We Cannot Stress Just How Important This Discovery Is” | The Daily Galaxy
A team of European astrophysicists has discovered the most extensive planetary system to date that orbit star KOI-351 – with seven planets, more than in other known planetary systems arranged in a similar fashion to the eight planets in the Solar System, with small rocky planets close to the parent star and gas giant planets at greater distances. Although the planetary system around KOI-351 is packed together more tightly, “We cannot stress just how important this discovery is. It is a big step in the search for a ‘twin’ to the Solar System, and thus also in finding a second Earth,” said Juan Cabrera, an astrophysicist at the DLR Institute of Planetary Research in Berlin-Adlershof.
Flemming Christens Mitosis | Zeiss Microscopy
Approximately 125 years before FUCCI imaging, German anatomist Walther Flemming (not to be confused with Alexander Fleming, the Scottish biologist who discovered Penicillin) was laying down the foundation of modern cell biology by deciphering the major steps of the cell cycle. With new dyes (i.e, aniline) to stain Chromosomen and essentially only the sun to illuminate his microscope, Flemming documented remarkable details of nuclear dynamics during mitosis, describing the process similar to how we think of it today.
Figure Eights and Peanut Shells: How Stars Move at the Center of the Galaxy | ScienceDaily
Two months ago astronomers created a new 3D map of stars at the centre of our Galaxy (the Milky Way), showing more clearly than ever the bulge at its core. Previous explanations suggested that the stars that form the bulge are in banana-like orbits, but a paper published this week in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society suggests that the stars probably move in peanut-shell or figure of eight-shaped orbits instead.
The difference is important; astronomers develop theories of star motions to not only understand how the stars in our galaxy are moving today but also how our galaxy formed and evolves. The Milky Way is shaped like a spiral, with a region of stars at the centre known as the “bar,” because of its shape. In the middle of this region, there is a “bulge” that expands out vertically.
In the new work Alice Quillen, professor of astronomy at the University of Rochester, and her collaborators created a mathematical model of what might be happening at the centre of the Milky Way. Unlike the Solar System where most of the gravitational pull comes from the Sun and is simple to model, it is much harder to describe the gravitational field near the centre of the Galaxy, where millions of stars, vast clouds of dust, and even dark matter swirl about. In this case, Quillen and her colleagues considered the forces acting on the stars in or near the bulge.
Asked by Anonymous AnonymousWho is your biggest inspiration in science?
Whether a tumor cell migrates into the bloodstream or leukocyte crawls out to attack pathogens, migrating cells often confront barriers. Invertebrate models offer a chance to characterize the molecular details of barrier crossing. For example, during uterine-vulval development in C. elegans, the basement membrane (blue) that separates these two tissues slides open to create a passageway for mating and egg-laying.
Hubble Sees a Horsehead of a Different Color | Hubble
A Dangerous Transition | Anne Weston
Just as embryonic cells undergo an epithelial to mesenchymal transition during gastrulation, cancer cells can reactivate this developmental program to become motile and metastasize to other tissues. During this “EMT,” adherens junction components, such as E-cadherin and β-catenin, are targeted for destruction, while the activation of the GTPases Cdc42 and Rac1 favors the formation of lamellipodia and filopodia, migration, and invasion.
’Smoking Gun’ After Gamma-Ray Blast | Hubble
Cosmic “Sonic Boom” Brightens Tycho’s Supernova —Its Light Reached Earth in 1572 | The Daily Galaxy
When a star explodes as a supernova, it shines brightly for a few weeks or months before fading away. Yet the material blasted outward from the explosion still glows hundreds or thousands of years later, forming a picturesque supernova remnant. What powers such long-lived brilliance? In the case of Tycho’s supernova remnant, astronomers have discovered that a reverse shock wave racing inward at Mach 1000 (1000 times the speed of sound) is heating the remnant and causing it to emit X-ray light.
"We wouldn’t be able to study ancient supernova remnants without a reverse shock to light them up," says Hiroya Yamaguchi, who conducted this research at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (CfA).
The Lone Ranger | Tom Deerinck
Kupffer cells are specialized macrophages that patrol tiny vessels in the liver called sinusoids, recycling old red blood cells and ingesting pathogens. The endothelium of these vessels is perforated with large holes, allowing the Kupffer cells to migrate into liver tissue at sites of inflammation and damage.
Dark Matter Ring in Galaxy Cluster | NASA
I highly suggest you follow [this link] to get the full resolution image. You’d be able to see almost clearly the individual galaxies.
What a universe we live in.
Axonal Waves | Dawen Cai, Josh R. Sanes, Jeff W. Lichtman
A nerve comprises axons of peripheral sensory neurons bundled together as ribbon. Here the axonal bundles of the dorsal root ganglions are imaged by fluorescence line scanning confocoal microscope (Zeiss LSM710) equipped with multiple lasers. To create this image, a new generation of “Brainbow” mouse was created by a crossing the original mouse with one containing the Cre gene under the control of the Islet-1 promoter. Enhanced green fluorescent protein, Kusabira-Orange, and mKate2 fluorescent proteins are digitally colored in blue, green and red, respectively.
Armored Plankton: Coccolithophores | Harald Andrulei
The cellular structures featured in this photoset are unlikely to appear in general biology textbooks because they are newly described, somewhat rare, and/or their functions are obscure. They range from the astonishing extracellular secretions of algae shown here to subcellular magnets in bacteria and the vaults and “snakes” found in many eukaryotic cells.
Coccospheres are calcareous exoskeletons of tiny (typically less than 10 µm in diameter), single-celled marine algae. These astonishingly elaborate and species-specific structures of largely unknown function form from cell secretions, and they accumulate in marine deposits that form chalky rock. All three coccosphere images were taken with a Sirion 200 field-emission SEM of the Dutch Company FEI.
The Cell’s Muscles and Bones | Torsten Wittmann
Cell movement begins with lamellipodia. A thin sheet of actin filaments (light purple) that stretches out to the cell’s periphery, lamellipodia generate pushing forces that drive the cell forward. Microtubules (cyan) can barely penetrate this actin network, but they direct cell motility in other ways, such as controlling cell adhesion and acting as the cell’s internal compass.
Asked by Anonymous AnonymousI've just want to say that i love your blog, thanks so much for creating this site!
This universe is wonderful. How can I possibly not share this wondrous beauty with you guys? :’)