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Calendar competition – And the winners are…

Posted by , on 20 May 2019

With over 10,000 votes cast, almost 6,000 people viewing the galleries and a new record for daily page views on the Node, we can now announce the winners of our inaugural calendar competition. We were blown away by the quality of the entries – 62 images of all kinds of cells, tissues and embryos. Check out the original post to see all the entries – as you’ll see, so many beautiful images missed out, and we’d like to thank everyone who took part.

So, category by category, here are the 12 winners who will make the final print calendar, and below them a full vote rundown (there were quite a few close calls!). We’re aiming to take the calendars with us to two upcoming meetings: SDB in Boston in July and the European Developmental Biology Congress in Alicante in October. Come grab one if you’re going.




1st place: Light up

By Paul Gerald Layague Sanchez

(EMBL Heidelberg)

E14.5 mouse embryo labeled for cartilage (Sox9-GFP, in biop-SpringGreen) and vasculature (highlighter ink circulated by injection in a blood vessel, in mpl-magma). Vasculature “lights up” the embryo, including within the developing bones of the limbs. Image taken using a microscope kindly sponsored by Zeiss during the 2018 Embryology Course at the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole, MA.


2nd place: Human neuron

By Nicholas Gatford

(Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience, King’s College London)

Super-resolution image acquired via structured illumination microscopy of a single developing human neuron ectopically expressing the autism risk gene neuroligin-4X with enlarged growth cones. F-actin is in green, HA-tagged neuroligin-4X is in magenta, doublecortin is in cyan confirming its neuronal identity, and the nuclear marker DAPI is in grey.




1st place: Zebrafish head

By Oscar Ruiz

(Department of Genetics MD Anderson Cancer Center)

Transgenic zebrafish (Danio rerio) larva expressing red fluorescent protein in the developing mouth and olfactory epithelium. A subset of cells also express a construct that labels actin filament with green fluorescent protein. DAPI (blue) is used to label DNA in the nuclei of all cells.


2nd place: Zebrafish gills

By Philippa Carr

(Bateson Centre, University of Sheffield)

Developing gill vasculature in a 120h old zebrafish and also features the heart. This image was taken using lightsheet microscopy in two transgenic lines, one that marks the endothelial actin and the other marks the endothelial nuclei. After acquisition it was processed as a colour coded depth projection.


Vertebrate variety show


1st place: Alligator

By Daniel Smith Paredes

(Department of Geology and Geophysics, Yale University)

Alligator mississipiensis embryo at stage 13-14 immunostained against Myosin heavy chain showing the developing muscles and (red) and neurofilament labeling axons of nerves.


2nd place: Chicken embryo

By Laurel Yohe

(Department of Geology and Geophysics, Yale University)

Stage 35 chicken embryo, cleared and immunostained for DAPI (orange) and Pax3 (cyan) demonstrating the developing neural crest and spinal cord. Image was taken on the Nikon AZ-C2 macro-confocal with image analysis performed in Imaris. Image was taken in collaboration with Andrea Attardi at the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics during the Woods Hole 2018 Embryology course.




1st place: Drosophila ovary

By Yujun Chen

(Kansas State University Division of Biology).

*Yujun also wins the ‘Star of Instagram’ award for most-liked post (we posted all 62 individually from Development’s account!), and the image is the new profile pic*

Drosophila whole ovary stained for f-actin (Red), nuclei (Cyan) and actin (Green).



2nd place: Metallic flight

By Marisa Merino

(Department of Biochemistry, University of Geneva)

Drosophila mutant showing a decreased eye size compared to wild type. This line is not able to generate descendants with wild type flies.


Invertebrate variety show


1st place: Bobtail squid

By Martyna Lukoseviciute

(Weatherall Institute of Molecular Medicine, University of Oxford)

Live Hawaiian Bobtail Squid (Euprymna scolopes), stained with vital dyes (CellMask, LysoTracker and Hoechst) to understand its cellular and sub-cellular organisation during development. Blue is labelling cellular nuclei, green – cell plasma membranes and red – lysosomes that are important for cellular waste removal. This species is a candidate model organism that yet holds many answers to developmental biology questions, such as nervous system and eye development. The image was taken during the MBL 2018 Embryology Course with the confocal microscope provided by Zeiss. Animals were supplied by the cephalopod researcher Carrie Albertin.


2nd place: Hydractinia

By Indu Patwal

(Centre for Chromosome Biology, National University of Ireland Galway)

DIC and fluorescence image of Hydractinia male sexual (left) and feeding polyps (right) on a chitin bed. Chitin is shown in green. Noncycling cells probed with cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor (CDKI) are shown in yellow, which are mainly in nematocytes, male gonophore, and gastrodermis.


Plants, Fungi and Choanoflagellates


1st place: Arabidopsis lateral root

By Robertas Ursache

(University of Lausanne, Switzerland)

The development of a lateral root in Arabidopsis thaliana. The sample has been cleared and stained with Calcofluor White to outline the cell walls and the green fluorescent nuclei represent a protein expressed specifically in the outer cell layer of developing lateral root.


Art and illustration


1st place: The yin and yang of developmental patterning

By Beata Edyta Mierzwa

(Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research and the University of California, San Diego, and

This drawing illustrates the remarkable self-organization capacity of cerebral organoids that allows them to recapitulate human brain development in vitro. Each color represents a different type of cell, and the dorsal and ventral areas are separated by a defined boundary – like a yin and yang symbolizing the balance between distinct but complementary entities.


Full vote rundown









Vertebrate variety show






Invertebrate variety show



Plants, Fungi and Choanoflagellates



Art and illustration

Thumbs up (2 votes)

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Categories: Images, Science Art

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