Watch a tiny virus take a constitutional under a laser-powered 3D microscope

If you’re anything like me, you spend a significant portion of the day wondering about the paths viruses take when they’re cruising around your internals. Luckily for us, a newly developed microscope from Duke researchers can show the exact path taken by the little critters (?), down to the micrometer.

The system, designed by a team led by assistant professor Kevin Welsher, isn’t like a traditional microscope. Instead of magnifying an image using natural or augmented light, it scans a laser through a small volume repeatedly and from multiple angles. This illuminates special fluorescent particles, the positions of which can be tracked over time.

Attach one of those particles to something else and you can track what it’s doing. It’s kind of like a mocap studio for…

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