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This is not the aftermath of a riotous New Year’s Eve Party but a snapshot of neurons in the process of organizing themselves into circuits in the visual system of a fruit fly. Using genetic tools that label neurons in different colors when viewed with a fluorescence light microscope, scientists are able to accurately trace the arrangements of neuronal processes in the eye and the brain — a necessary step to understanding the molecular basis of behavior.
Photoreceptor neurons were randomly labeled with different colors using a technique called “multi-color flip-out labeling,” and viewed using a confocal microscope.
Charlotte Wit and Robin Hiesinger, PhD, Neurogenetics Laboratory, Free University of Berlin, Germany.