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Researchers used AI to turn two-dimensional (2D) images into stacks of virtual three-dimensional (3D) slices showing activity inside organisms. Pixabay

A team of researchers has used Artificial Intelligence (AI) to turn two-dimensional (2D) images into stacks of virtual three-dimensional (3D) slices showing activity inside organisms.

Using deep learning techniques, the team from University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) devised a technique that extends the capabilities of fluorescence microscopy, which allows scientists to precisely label parts of living cells and tissue with dyes that glow under special lighting.


In a study published in the journal Nature Methods, the scientists also reported that their framework, called “Deep-Z,” was able to fix errors or aberrations in images, such as when a sample is tilted or curved.

Further, they demonstrated that the system could take 2D images from one type of microscope and virtually create 3D images of the sample as if they were obtained by another, more advanced microscope.

“This is a very powerful new method that is enabled by deep learning to perform 3D imaging of live specimens, with the least exposure to light, which can be toxic to samples,” said senior author Aydogan Ozcan, UCLA chancellor’s professor of electrical and computer engineering.

In addition to sparing specimens from potentially damaging doses of light, this system could offer biologists and life science researchers a new tool for 3D imaging that is simpler, faster and much less expensive than current methods.


3D imaging that shows the activity inside organisms has been made easier with the use of AI. Pixabay

The opportunity to correct for aberrations may allow scientists studying live organisms to collect data from images that otherwise would be unusable.

Investigators could also gain virtual access to expensive and complicated equipment, said researchers.

“Deep-Z” was taught using experimental images from a scanning fluorescence microscope, which takes pictures focused at multiple depths to achieve 3D imaging of samples.

In thousands of training runs, the neural network learned how to take a 2D image and infer accurate 3D slices at different depths within a sample.

Then, the framework was tested blindly – fed with images that were not part of its training, with the virtual images compared to the actual 3D slices obtained from a scanning microscope, providing an excellent match.

The researchers also found that Deep-Z could produce 3D images from 2D surfaces where samples were tilted or curved.

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“This feature was actually very surprising,” said Yichen Wu, a UCLA graduate student who is co-first author of the publication. “With it, you can see through curvature or other complex topology that is very challenging to image.” (IANS)


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Indian astronomers have found an active galaxy in a very bright state with 10 times more X-ray emission than normal

Indian astronomers have found an active galaxy in a very bright state with 10 times more X-ray emission than normal, equivalent to more than 10 trillion of the sun, and located five billion light years away that could help probe how particles behave under intense gravity and acceleration to the speed of light.

It could help study the role of strong gravity and acceleration of matter in the formation, interaction and evolution of galaxies in the early universe.

Every galaxy in the universe is believed to host a supermassive black hole at its centre. In some galaxies, the black hole is actively devouring a large amount of material and shooting a jet of plasma almost at the speed of light towards us. These are called blazars.

OJ 287 belongs to a class of blazars known as BL Lacertae objects which show very rapid and large amplitude flux variations but barely discernible emission line features.

This class of sources emit in the whole electromagnetic spectrum, a rather uncommon phenomenon which requires extreme physical conditions. Hence, a study of such sources tells us about the behaviour of matter in an extreme gravitational field where it is difficult for light to escape from the vicinity of the black hole.

Astronomers at Aryabhatta Research Institute of Observational Sciences, an autonomous institute of the Department of Science and Technology, Government of India, have been monitoring one such black hole system named 'OJ 287' since 2015. This source shows a repeated optical brightness enhancement almost every 12 years.

"The repeated optical enhancement makes OJ 287 very intriguing as this class of sources does not show any repeating features in flux variations. The repeated optical enhancement made the researchers believe that the system hosts a binary black hole," said a release from the Ministry of Science and Technology.

In 2020, the source was very bright at optical and X-ray bands with X-ray flux more than 10 times the normal (non-active phase) flux. This flare was very different as it was not expected in models proposed for this source and thus, indicated a more complex system and physical conditions.

Investigating the extreme brightness shown by OJ 287 at optical and X-ray bands, astronomers led by Pankaj Kushwaha and Alok C. Gupta reported the source in a completely new spectral state.

The team argued that this change of state holds clues to the researcher's quest to understand how matter behaves in very strong gravity and how it accelerates the particle to almost the speed of light -- a feat that is out of the scope of even the most advanced CERN accelerator.

The research published in 'The Astrophysical Journal' tracked the details of changes in optical to the X-ray emission spectrum of the source with time from 2017 to 2020 -- after the second brightest X-ray flare of the source. It revealed how the source gradually started to change its spectral behaviour from mid-2018 to the new spectral state in 2020.

The study included data recorded by the ground-based facility operated by Physical Research Laboratory, Ahmedabad, operated Mount Abu observing facility in near infra-red bands and the space-based NASA's satellites -- the Niels Gherel Swift satellite at optical, UV and X-rays with gamma ray data from the Fermi satellite, the release added. (IANS/JB)

Keywords: Science, NASA, Satellites, Black Hole, Gravity, India


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Tospread awareness about the significance of reading, Rachna Kalra, who hails from Gurugram (Haryana), started the Silent Book Club in the year 2019.

Who doesn't like reading, and that, too, reading along the company of mother nature? Well, this book club is truly a fantasy turned to reality.

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Ninety-eight per cent of Indian travellers say they want to stay in a sustainable accommodation in the coming year.

A Travel Sustainable badge, provides highly coveted information to travellers all over the world looking to make more sustainable travel choices. Booking.com has launched the Travel Sustainable Badge, a first of its kind in the industry, designed to be applicable to a wide range of property types, from apartments, B&Bs, and vacation homes to hotels, resorts, and even treehouses, and adaptable to local realities and considerations.

Ninety-eight per cent of Indian travellers say they want to stay in a sustainable accommodation in the coming year, and with more than 28 million listings on Booking.com, the company sees a huge opportunity to highlight more of the impactful efforts its partners are making to create more sustainable experiences, making it easier for travellers to find a sustainable way to stay.

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