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Japanese scientists succeed in making mice transparent
November 8, 2014 – Invisibility may still be the stuff of fiction, but researchers in Japan have developed a way to make mice almost totally transparent.
Using a method that almost completely removes color from tissue, researchers say they can now examine individual organs or even whole bodies without slicing into them, offering a “bigger picture” view of the problems they are working on.
The techniques will give scientists a “new understanding of the 3-D structure of organs and how certain genes are expressed in various tissues,” said Kazuki Tainaka, the lead author of a research paper published in the U.S.-based Cell magazine.
“We were very surprised that the entire body of infant and adult mice could be made nearly transparent,” he said in a statement issued by the government-backed Riken research institute and collaborators
The work, which also involved the University of Tokyo and the Japan Science and Technology Agency, focuses on a compound called heme, the constituent that gives blood its red color and is found in most body tissue.
The process involves pumping a saline solution through the mouse’s heart to push the blood out of its circulatory system.
Sources and more information:
• Japan Scientists Make See-Through Mice (http://www.businessinsider.com.au/afp-japan-scientists-make-see-through-mice-2014-11)
Invisibility may still be the stuff of fictional works like Harry Potter, but researchers in Japan have developed a way to make mice almost totally transparent. Using a method that almost completely removes colour from tissue – and kills the mouse in the process – researchers say …
• Researchers in Japan create creepy-looking transparent mouse ( http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2014/11/07/researchers-in-japan-make-a-creepy-looking-transparent-dead-mouse/)