Image of the Week
on December 8th, 2013
As winter approaches it strips the honeyed glow of fall from the trees. In this period of transition, you can see the soon-to-be-winterized skeletons that will remain – the trunks and branches that are the forest’s bones. In the image above, entitled Hello Winter
, Finnish artist Janne Parviainen
used a form of long-exposure, slow shutter speed photography, called light painting
, to play with similarities between the human form and the change of seasons.
From Parviainen’s description of this work
The photo was done last year just before the first snow came to Helsinki. I live near the street in this photo and I always admire how beautiful the street and the trees look in autumn. As a child, I was very impressed by the symbolism in Finnish paintings of winter, and wanted to make my own interpretation of the subject whilst capturing the beauty of the scene and the feeling of oncoming winter.
All my light art photos are straight from the camera, no post processing of any kind has been done to them.
Photo by Janne Parviainen
Image of the Week
on November 24th, 2013
When I sat down to write last week’s story on the School of Medicine’s art exhibit, I thought the most difficult aspect of the piece would be weaving six different interviews into one coherent story. I was wrong. The most difficult task was choosing just one photo to accompany the story. Happily, I discovered a loophole that allows me to show you two images related to this one story.
The image above was taken by one of the artists featured in the exhibit at Stanford’s Li Ka Shing Center for Learning and Knowledge. Professor Matthew Scott, PhD, told me that these elegant seabirds are avocets and that the photo was taken ”right here in Stanford’s backyard, in the amazing Palo Alto Baylands.”
Previously: Stanford’s School of Medicine Art Exhibit displays faculty’s artistic side, More than shiny: Stanford’s new sculpture by Alyson Shotz and Image of the Week: Artful arches from Stanford’s Art Exhibit Extravaganza 2013
Photo by Matthew Scott, PhD
Image of the Week, Pain
on November 17th, 2013
As my colleague wrote about last week, the current issue of Stanford magazine includes a feature, “Make It Stop,” on the pain research happening here. The image above - in my mind, the perfect representation of intense, all-encompassing pain – accompanies the article and makes Kristin Sainani’s piece that much more compelling.
Previously: Stanford researchers address the complexities of chronic pain
Photo by Lukasz Szyszka
Image of the Week
on November 10th, 2013
Neurons, with their fingerlike projections, tend to look like the aftermath of a bunch of paint cans overturned. But, if you can convince yourself that the image above isn’t the result of a careless paint job, you’ll see that the neurons dyed either red or yellow are similar, with some differences.
As Amy Adams explains on the California Stem Cell Agency‘s (CIRM) blog, these particular splotches of “paint” are the product of researchers from the lab of Ricardo Dolmetsch, PhD.
The streaks in yellow are neurons grown from the skin of healthy humans that lack a particular genetic disorder. The neurons in red were generated from humans with the genetic disorder Phelan-McDermid syndrome (PMDS). This syndrome affects proteins found in organs such as the brain and can result in a variety of symptoms ranging from difficulty sleeping, to cognitive issues, to problems regulating body temperature. This genetic disorder is also associated with a greater risk of autism.
The Dolmetsch team found that the PMDS and PMDS-free neurons behaved differently – the red neurons from people with the genetic disorder were unable to transmit signals as well as the the yellow neurons without the genetic disorder. The team’s findings were published in the journal Nature and are discussed in Adam’s story on the CIRM blog.
Previously: More Stanford findings on the autistic brain, The Reason I Jump: Insights on autism and communication, Director of Stanford Autism Center responds to your questions on research and treatment, Light-switch seizure control? In a bright new study, researchers show how and New imaging analysis reveals distinct features of the autistic brain
Photo by Alex Shcheglovitov
Image of the Week
on November 3rd, 2013
Every Tuesday, Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital hosts a class for new parents called Mother-Baby Mornings. Last week’s class gave moms a chance to share tips and tricks to manage their new life as a parent, while their beautiful babies showed off their Halloween spirit.
The free weekly class is available to parents with infants up to six months of age. The New Family Program’s website provides more details.
Photo by Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital
Image of the Week
on October 27th, 2013
When I saw this cacophony of color I knew I’d found my image of the week, but you’d never know it from reading the photo’s caption alone. The simple caption of this Wellcome image reads, “crystals of urea.”
Urea, also known as carbamide, is a waste product that’s formed by humans – and other mammals, some fish and amphibians – when our bodies break down proteins. When we digest proteins, such as proteins in our food, it first forms a highly toxic compound, called ammonia. Fortunately, our bodies quickly convert ammonia to urea – a much less harmful waste product – and the urea is excreted from our bodies in urine.
Photo by Spike Walker/Wellcome Images
Image of the Week
on October 20th, 2013
I had a terrible time writing the rough draft of my thesis. Then a wise friend told me that the first draft didn’t need to be a work of art; “just get it on the page.”
Artist and resident physician Stephen Gaeta, MD, PhD, took this advice one step further. Not only did he get his thesis on the page, he created a work of art in the process. The result is the image shown above, entitled Beat Poetry.
I talked with Gaeta earlier this week to learn what inspired this fusion of art, science and writing. Gaeta told me that after he finished his graduate research on cardiac arrhythmias he wanted to share the results of his hard work with others. He thought of displaying a figure from his thesis as art, but “not many people want a poster of a T wave alternans on their wall.”
Then he got the idea to warp the text of his thesis to create an image of an anatomical heart. He “signed” his artwork by adding an EKG of his own heartbeat at the bottom of his image.
“I didn’t expect many people to read my work,” Gaeta told me. “Now, not only have many people read it, they have it hanging on their walls.”
You can view and order posters of Gaeta’s images created with text from classical scientific and medical works from his store on StreetAnatomy.
Artwork by Stephen Gaeta
Image of the Week, Science, Stanford News
on October 13th, 2013
What an eventful week for Stanford’s School of Medicine! Two days after molecular neuroscientist Thomas Südhof, MD, won the Nobel Prize in Medicine, we learned that another faculty member, Michael Levitt, PhD, was winner of the 2013 Nobel Prize in Chemistry. At Wednesday’s press conference on campus, Levitt (second-to-right in the photo above) found himself in good company: Though Südhof was still in Europe, conference attendees included Levitt’s fellow Nobelists (from left to right) Andrew Fire, PhD (Medicine, 2006); Roger Kornberg, PhD (Chemistry, 2006); and Brian Kobilka, MD (Chemistry, 2012).
Previously: Stanford’s Michael Levitt wins 2013 Nobel Prize in Chemistry, Stanford’s Thomas Südhof wins 2013 Nobel Prize in Medicine and Stanford’s Brian Kobilka wins 2012 Nobel Prize in Chemistry
Photo by L.A. Cicero/Stanford News Service
Fertility, Image of the Week, Stanford News
on October 6th, 2013
Every birth is a miracle, but some births are a bit more miraculous than others. In this case, the phrase “the miracle of birth” couldn’t possibly be more fitting – this child was born to an infertile woman.
Earlier this week, my colleague described how this birth came to be. The mother of this child was successfully treated for a condition called primary ovarian insufficiency. The treatment was developed in the lab of Stanford professor of obstetrics and gynecology Aaron Hsueh, PhD, and the man shown in the image above, Kazuhiro Kawamura, MD, PhD, of the St. Marianna University School of Medicine, managed the clinical component of this trial.
This is the first baby conceived though a treatment of this kind.
Previously: Oh, baby! Infertile woman gives birth through Stanford-developed technique and Researchers describe procedure that induces egg growth in infertile women
Photo by Kazuhiro Kawamura, MD, PhD
Image of the Week, Medicine X, Stanford News, Technology
on September 29th, 2013
Stanford Medicine X is in session and #MedX is trending on Twitter. Pictured above, Nick Dawson, a member of the conference’s ePatient advisory panel, captures proceedings from the foot of the stage.
He’s wearing a piece by patient advocate and Medicine X artist in residence Regina Holliday. It’s part of the Walking Gallery collection, which comprises 269 painted jackets – 239 by Holliday – worn by people on five continents (including U.S. Chief Technology Officer Todd Park). Recipients typically provide their own jacket and may choose to donate to cover the cost of paint, but the finished pieces cannot be purchased so that people of any means could have access to one.
Dawson and Holliday are among the conference’s speakers, who are a diverse community of ePatients, academics, designers, doctors, and other leaders in health care. This morning at 10:35 a.m., Dawson joins IDEO partner Dennis Boyle and blogger Britt Johnson in discussing last Thursday’s IDEO Design Challenge.
The conference ends today at 4:35 p.m. Pacific. Watch the free live stream of plenary sessions, or follow #MedX on Twitter to join the conversation.
More news about Stanford Medicine X is available in the Medicine X category.
Photo by Stanford Medicine X