Wellcome image awards now on display

10_tnWellcome Images is displaying the winners of its 2008 competition, which asked people to submit "shapes and patterns illustrating the microscopic structures of living organisms in a spectacular variety of ways." The display, which opened on 12 March in London, will continue until "the summer". if you can’t visit in person, however, you can view the winning images in an online gallery. The picture in this post is from a computer analysis by Anton Enright, showing the relationships between different gene activity patterns. Each dot is a gene, and the number of links between the dots depends on the similarity of expression patterns of the different genes. Clustered, three-dimensional gene-expression network diagrams such as this one can show patters emerging in the masses of information provided by DNA chip systems — helping to make sense of it all. You may not be able to see the 3D effect very well in this small thumbnail, but you will if you view the larger image on the Wellcome’s site. There are some very beautiful pictures in the gallery, with audio explanations by the various scientist-artists.