A live developing sea urchin embryo was imaged using differential contrast microscopy to enhance cellular details. Each minute a through focal series (Z-series) of micrographs was acquired to capture 3D information. In the movie, several Z-series captured about 1 hr apart are presented, providing a '4D' view of this stage in embryo development.
4-D images of a developing sea urchin gastrula (with DIC adjusted to show birefringence of developing spicules). Every 60 seconds, through-focal optical sections were acquired in rapid sequence ( 5 sec/stack of 104 frames) using stepper-motor-driven focusing controls on Shinya Scope 6, controlled by a Universal Imaging MetaMorph program . Out of the whole sequence, which lasted without interruption for 5 hours 20 minutes, four pairs of through-focal sequences separated approximately an hour apart are displayed here. See Article 42 (S. Inoue and TD Inoue 1986. Ann NY Acad Sci 483:392-404) in Inoue S 2008 Collected Works of Shinya Inoue World Scientific Publishing Co. Ltd. Hackensack, NJ pp 392-404.
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