Anyone who has ever looked through a microscope can attest to the fact that the world under the microscope is a world of its own. Even things visible to the naked eye appear novel and often mysterious. On the track of point mutations within a so-called droplet PCR assay, the now first place winning image "River with little island" was created.
Franziska Schlenker, a researcher in the field of liquid biopsy, used fluorescence-labelled reporter molecules to study DNA fragments located in individual droplets in an oil phase. The image consists of a composite overlay of 72 individual images taken with the BioTek "Lionheart LX" microscope. The mediator probe assay shown here does not require complex optimization and its flexible design enables comprehensive mutation analyses, e.g. for cancer patients. The Agilent company BioTek is based in Vermont, USA.