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Art of Neuroscience 2011

The first Art of Neuroscience competition took place in 2011 and participation was limited to members of the Netherlands Institute for Neuroscience in Amsterdam. Three winning entries were selected while 5 additional works received an honorable mention. You can visit our online gallery to browse through other entries, or download a compilation of all entries with full descriptions in PDF format

Staring back

Jornt de Gruijl

First prize 2011

The two-photon microscopy experiments Gruijl performs have a bit of a mesmerizing quality, with a mouse running on a disc and image sequences of neuronal activity to captivate us. As we spend time gazing at the experiment, could it be staring back at us somehow?




Dance in Amber

Alicia Garcia

Second prize 2011

Golgi stain of cortical pyramidal neurons of a rat brain. 140 years after its discovery, the Golgi stain technique is still widely used in neuroscience.



Kasper Roet

Third prize 2011

This piece originates from the last of over ten thousand rat embyronic dorsal root ganglion explants that have passed Roet’s horizon in the past six years. These explants are grown in different conditions to determine the effects of treatments on neuronal growth.

The dendritic tree is visualized by beta-actin and the explant itself by a nuclear staining. By a unique combination of three different explants, Roet has tried to capture their fragile and competitive nature which is also reflected in the title.



Juliette Cheyne

Honorable mention 2011

This image shows two CA3 neurons in cultured hippocampal slices that Cheyne filled with dye using electroporation, combined to form a collage of neurons as dominoes. Neurons + dominoes = neuronimoes.



Web of neural stem cells

Miriam van Strien

Honorable mention 2011

The neural stem cells shown were derived from post-mortem material (subventricular zone) of an Alzheimer patient of 90 years old.The stem cells proliferate en thereby form a neurosphere. van Strien let the neurospheres attach to attain this view. The center contains the neurosphere and is surrounded by loose stem cells and stem cells that differentiate into astrocytes and neurons.



Optokinetic reflex

Leonardo Tolosa Rodriguez

Honorable mention 2011

The background of this image represents the visual stimulus of our setup during an optokinetic reflex test. In front two Purkinje cells are shown (one from each cerebellar hemisphere) which seem distorted due to the turntable vibration of a visual ocular reflex test. The diffuse and hard to localize eyes behind the Purkinje cells are a metaphor representing our challenge to understand the interaction between signal coding in the cerebellum and eye movement.




Martina Moeton

Honorable mention 2011

Primary mouse astrocytes stained against GFAP isoforms (green and red) and nuclei (blue). The image was acquired with an epifluorescent microscope. The intermediate filaments show the ‘astroghost’ and his little brother with sad eyes.



A rose in the brain

Lieneke Kooijman

Honorable mention 2011

An astrocyte (glial fibrillary acidic protein in green) interacting or ‘hugging’ a plaque (amyloid precursor protein in red) in the cortex of an Alzheimer mouse brain. Nuclei are stained blue. With some imagination you can also see it as a little rose (red), with stem (green) and leaves (blue).