At the 77th annual meeting of the DPG in Regensburg 2013, Europhysics Letters (represented by its editor-in-chief Prof. Schreiber) and the Biological Physics Division of the German Physical Society awarded two presentation awards for outstanding scientific achievements in the context of the poster sessions. The awards went to
- Mrs. Lena Nolte (Master student in the research group of Prof. Thomas Huser at Universität Bielefeld)
- Mr. Christian Westendorf (MPI DS, Göttingen, working with Profs. Bodenschatz and Beta)
Laudatio Lena Nolte
The first award goes to Lena Nolte (Master student in the research group of Prof. Thomas Huser at Universität Bielefeld) for her contribution "Non-Invasive Imaging and Quality Assessment of Artificial Cartilage". Lena combined several optical techniques to analyze the cartilage without special preparation or labeling. She demonstrated how cartilage cells (chondrocytes) can be visualized by coherent anti-Stokes Raman scattering (CARS) and the extracellular matrix (ECM) using Second Harmonic Generation (SHG). Using these techniques, it was possible to reconstruct images of a size of up to 1.5 cm x 7.5 cmith a spatial resolution down to 1 micrometer. Furthermore, spontaneous Raman scattering was applied to obtain Raman spectra from specific points of interest. This provides molecular information about the cartilage composition within these specific regions. It is expected that the demonstrated multiphoton microscopy system will be a powerful device to also reveal similarities and differences between natural and artificial cartilage in the future. Lena's most appealing poster as well as her clear presentation explained the approach and results in an excellent manner.
Laudatio Christian Westendorf
The second award goes to Christian Westendorf (MPIDS, Göttingen) for a collaborative work between the groups of E. Bodenschatz (Göttingen) and C. Beta (Postdam). The contribution named "The actin cytoskeleton of chemotactic amoebae operates close to the onset of oscillations" reports on the re-arrangement of the actin cytoskeleton in Dictyostelium discoidum cells in the course of chemotaxis. Using laser-induced uncaging of cAMP, local and transient stimuli have been provided to the cells and their subsequent response was monitored via fluorescent actin. Depending on the repetition rate of stimulation, a quasi-resonant oscillation of actin towards the cell's plasma membrane was observed that is key for the cell's movement towards the stimulus. The experimental data was in favorable agreement with a delay-equation which captures the essential time scale of biochemical signaling cascades that link the cell's locomotion to the sensing of food sources. Not only the scientific contents of poster but also the presentation of the results were excellent and therefore deserved BP's second poster award at the DPG spring meeting 2013.