Every year, the Koch Institute at MIT shares some of the most stunning images produced at the research facility. This year's image awards include winner Allen Tseng of the Weiss lab.
His work focuses on synthetic biology, specifically on the development of organoids. They are miniature, simplified version of human organs that can be used as research models in the laboratory. They present an attractive alternative or complement to animal and 2D cell culture studies.
In his image, special cells have been engineered to grow into a simple model of a liver. The scientists started with stem cells, which can develop into pretty much any kind of cell in the body. They can do that by applying molecules that impact gene expression, changing the nature of the cell. Learn more from the video.