Science

Nikon's Photomicrography contest puts spectacular science under the microscope

Nikon's Photomicrography conte...
Closeup of a jumping spider, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Closeup of a jumping spider, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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The winning image of the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition shows a skin cell expressing an excessive amount of the keratin protein
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The winning image of the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition shows a skin cell expressing an excessive amount of the keratin protein
Taking third place in the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition is this image of a living Volvox algae releasing its daughter colonies
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Taking third place in the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition is this image of a living Volvox algae releasing its daughter colonies
The second-placed image in the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition shows a the flowering head of a plant Senecio vulgaris
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The second-placed image in the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition shows a the flowering head of a plant Senecio vulgaris
The fourth-placed image in Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition shows the end of a tapeworm turned inside out
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The fourth-placed image in Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition shows the end of a tapeworm turned inside out
Mold on a tomato took out fifth place in the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Mold on a tomato took out fifth place in the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Sixth place in the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition shows lily pollen up close
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Sixth place in the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition shows lily pollen up close
Seventh place in the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition goes to this image of axons in an embryonic chick ganglion, which is a ball of fluid inside a tendon or joint
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Seventh place in the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition goes to this image of axons in an embryonic chick ganglion, which is a ball of fluid inside a tendon or joint
This closeup image of a newborn rat cochlea took seventh place in the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition. Sensory hair cells can be seen in green, and spiral ganglion neurons in red
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This closeup image of a newborn rat cochlea took seventh place in the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition. Sensory hair cells can be seen in green, and spiral ganglion neurons in red
Ninth place in the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition shows cartilage-like tissue grown the lab using bone stem cells. Collagen fibers can be seen in green and fat deposits in red
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Ninth place in the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition shows cartilage-like tissue grown the lab using bone stem cells. Collagen fibers can be seen in green and fat deposits in red
Tenth place in the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition went to this image of the weevil Phyllobius roboretanus mating
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Tenth place in the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition went to this image of the weevil Phyllobius roboretanus mating
This closeup of a fractured hologram on a credit card placed 11th in the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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This closeup of a fractured hologram on a credit card placed 11th in the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
This closeup of a daddy long legs spider's eye placed 12th in the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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This closeup of a daddy long legs spider's eye placed 12th in the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Eggs of a common Mestra butterfly rest on a leaf of a Tragia sp. plant. This image placed 14th in the  Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Eggs of a common Mestra butterfly rest on a leaf of a Tragia sp. plant. This image placed 14th in the  Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
This image of a Megachiroptera fruit bat fetus during the third trimester placed 15th in the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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This image of a Megachiroptera fruit bat fetus during the third trimester placed 15th in the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
This portrait of a (orchid cuckoo bee placed 13th in the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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This portrait of a (orchid cuckoo bee placed 13th in the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Dyed human hair up close, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Dyed human hair up close, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Titmouse down feather up close, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Titmouse down feather up close, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Detail of sea cucumber skin, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Detail of sea cucumber skin, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Embryonic body wall of a developing Mus musculus  mouse, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Embryonic body wall of a developing Mus musculus  mouse, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Fungus and yeast colony from soil, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Fungus and yeast colony from soil, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Dye-injected hippocampal interneuron in a mouse's brain, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Dye-injected hippocampal interneuron in a mouse's brain, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Ciliated respiratory epithelial cells can be seen in yellow, mucus producing goblet cells in cyan, and the tight junctions and nuclei within in red and blue in this submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Ciliated respiratory epithelial cells can be seen in yellow, mucus producing goblet cells in cyan, and the tight junctions and nuclei within in red and blue in this submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Neurons imaged from a Parkinson patient can be seen in this submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Neurons imaged from a Parkinson patient can be seen in this submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Ganglion cells expressing fluorescent proteins in the retina of a mouse can be seen in this submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Ganglion cells expressing fluorescent proteins in the retina of a mouse can be seen in this submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
A dandelion cross-section shows curved stigma and pollen in this submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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A dandelion cross-section shows curved stigma and pollen in this submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Detail of broccoli in a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Detail of broccoli in a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Lead chromate-injected human tongue blood vessels can be seen in this submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Lead chromate-injected human tongue blood vessels can be seen in this submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Ribbon and filament textures of the B7 liquid crystal phase seen in polarized light, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Ribbon and filament textures of the B7 liquid crystal phase seen in polarized light, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Detail of warp -knitted curtain fabric, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Detail of warp -knitted curtain fabric, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Closeup of a robber fly can be seen in this submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Closeup of a robber fly can be seen in this submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
The male and female reproductive organs of Arabidopsis thaliana flowering plant can be seen in this submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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The male and female reproductive organs of Arabidopsis thaliana flowering plant can be seen in this submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Toothbrush detail can be seen in this submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Toothbrush detail can be seen in this submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Mouth parts of the Ixodes ricinus, a type of tick, can be seen in detail in this submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Mouth parts of the Ixodes ricinus, a type of tick, can be seen in detail in this submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
The minerals Nsutite and Cacoxenite shown in amazing detail in a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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The minerals Nsutite and Cacoxenite shown in amazing detail in a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
The nervous system of a juvenile squid can be seen in this submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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The nervous system of a juvenile squid can be seen in this submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
A pyromorphite mineral seen up close in a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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A pyromorphite mineral seen up close in a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Detail of a tropical weevil, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Detail of a tropical weevil, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Detail of a Hebomoia glaucippe, or great orange butterfly), in a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Detail of a Hebomoia glaucippe, or great orange butterfly), in a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Silver sulfide) needles grow on a 1.5 mm long wire of native silver in this submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Silver sulfide) needles grow on a 1.5 mm long wire of native silver in this submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Detail of a water centipede, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Detail of a water centipede, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Respiratory tubes of the Apis mellifera bee, seen in a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Respiratory tubes of the Apis mellifera bee, seen in a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Freshwater plankton Botryococcus sp. shown closeup in a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Freshwater plankton Botryococcus sp. shown closeup in a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Aquatic invertebrates called rotifers seen closeup in a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Aquatic invertebrates called rotifers seen closeup in a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Central region of a Geranium robertianum (Herb Robert) flower complete with pollen, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Central region of a Geranium robertianum (Herb Robert) flower complete with pollen, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Detail of Acacia dealbata (silver wattle) leaf, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Detail of Acacia dealbata (silver wattle) leaf, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Closeup of a plant tendril, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Closeup of a plant tendril, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
A three dimensional mouse skin collagen can be seen in this submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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A three dimensional mouse skin collagen can be seen in this submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
An image of prostate cancer cells, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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An image of prostate cancer cells, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Detail of a natural sponge, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Detail of a natural sponge, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Fibers of mulberry paper, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Fibers of mulberry paper, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
An alcea rosea (an ornamental flower) during the early stage of development, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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An alcea rosea (an ornamental flower) during the early stage of development, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Eyes of a digger wasp with condensation, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Eyes of a digger wasp with condensation, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Image of paracetamol crystals, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Image of paracetamol crystals, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Cross section of a pine needle, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Cross section of a pine needle, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Fractured microcapsules repair themselves in self-healing polymer blend, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Fractured microcapsules repair themselves in self-healing polymer blend, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Mosquito larva during early development, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Mosquito larva during early development, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Closeup of the abdominal proleg of a caterpillar
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Closeup of the abdominal proleg of a caterpillar
Neurons in the hippocampal of a rat brain
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Neurons in the hippocampal of a rat brain
Nerves, seen in green, under the skin of a mouse. with hair follicles shown in red and blue. A submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Nerves, seen in green, under the skin of a mouse. with hair follicles shown in red and blue. A submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Image shows mouse hippocampal neurons grown in a microfluidic device, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Image shows mouse hippocampal neurons grown in a microfluidic device, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Contents spill from a mouse fibroblast cell, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Contents spill from a mouse fibroblast cell, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Human sensory neurons derived from induced pluripotent stem cells, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Human sensory neurons derived from induced pluripotent stem cells, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Image of a semiconductor laser diode from a DVD drive, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Image of a semiconductor laser diode from a DVD drive, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Section of human bone, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Section of human bone, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Chains of Streptococcus pyogenes bacteria infect grape-like clusters of MRSA biofilm, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Chains of Streptococcus pyogenes bacteria infect grape-like clusters of MRSA biofilm, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Image of the Hippocampal (brain) region, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Image of the Hippocampal (brain) region, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Detail of a Circocerus (beetle) head, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Detail of a Circocerus (beetle) head, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
A process called neurogenesis takes place in the Dentate gyrus, part of the hippocampus region of the brain
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A process called neurogenesis takes place in the Dentate gyrus, part of the hippocampus region of the brain
An image of the microalgae Pleurotaenium ovatum 
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An image of the microalgae Pleurotaenium ovatum 
Image of cladocera, a type of water flea. A submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Image of cladocera, a type of water flea. A submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Image of cartilage-like tissue grown in vitro from bone stem cells, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Image of cartilage-like tissue grown in vitro from bone stem cells, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Underside of a pseudoscorpion, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Underside of a pseudoscorpion, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
This image shows the various stages of development of the small roundworm C. elegans from youngest on the left to oldest on the right
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This image shows the various stages of development of the small roundworm C. elegans from youngest on the left to oldest on the right
Closeup of a paperbark tree leaf, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Closeup of a paperbark tree leaf, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Closeup of a small moth, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Closeup of a small moth, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Image of the sagittal section of mouse brain, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Image of the sagittal section of mouse brain, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Image of a stamen (flower organ), a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Image of a stamen (flower organ), a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Fruit fly with mutant variations shown in middle and right images, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Fruit fly with mutant variations shown in middle and right images, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Image shows crystallized diphenylalanine peptide nanotubes, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Image shows crystallized diphenylalanine peptide nanotubes, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Image shows a human tumor cell undergoing cell division, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Image shows a human tumor cell undergoing cell division, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
A joint between an abdomen and thorax of an ant. A submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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A joint between an abdomen and thorax of an ant. A submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Image shows a sensory neuron in zebrafish larvae, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Image shows a sensory neuron in zebrafish larvae, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Label-free optical imaging of human breast tissue, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Label-free optical imaging of human breast tissue, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Image shows a red seaworm's stolon, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Image shows a red seaworm's stolon, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Image shows a cross-section of a mouse's head, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Image shows a cross-section of a mouse's head, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Image shows the 3D Nanoscale architecture of microtubule network, a mesh found within a cell's cytoplasm. A submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Image shows the 3D Nanoscale architecture of microtubule network, a mesh found within a cell's cytoplasm. A submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Closeup of moth eggs in spider silk, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Closeup of moth eggs in spider silk, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Closeup of a jumping spider, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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Closeup of a jumping spider, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
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View gallery - 89 images

Moldy tomatoes, mating beetles and fractured credit cards are just a few of the things revealed in amazing detail in the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition. The science-focused photography contest applies a microscope to much of what goes on under our noses everyday and the results are nothing but spectacular.

Now its in 43rd year, Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition received more than 2,000 entries from 88 different countries in 2017. These were whittled down to three prize winners, along with 85 honorable mentions and images of distinction. A closeup of a skin cell expressing high amounts of the protein keratin, captured by Dr. Bram van den Broek of The Netherlands Cancer Institute, took top honors.

The winning image of the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition shows a skin cell expressing an excessive amount of the keratin protein
The winning image of the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition shows a skin cell expressing an excessive amount of the keratin protein

"This year's winners not only reflect remarkable research and trends in science, but they also allow the public to get a glimpse of a hidden world," said Eric Flem, Communications Manager of Nikon Instruments. "This year's winning photo is an example of important work being done in the world of science, and that work can be shared thanks to rapidly advancing imaging technology."

The mechanics of various cells feature heavily on the winners list, and so too do gobsmacking images of the animal kingdom. Among them are beautifully composed snaps of spider eyes, butterflies and water centipedes, while an extreme closeup of the joint between an ant's abdomen and thorax provides particularly compelling viewing. There is also a smattering of everyday items thrown into the mix, such as paper fibers, toothbrushes and broccoli.

Closeup of moth eggs in spider silk, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition
Closeup of moth eggs in spider silk, a submission to the Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition

Dr van den Broek was awarded a trip to the Nikon factory in Tokyo for his winning photograph, but truth be told, all of the images to make the winners list really are something to behold. Click through to the gallery to take a look for yourself.

Source: Nikon

View gallery - 89 images
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