Friday, October 12, 2007

H5N1 Beautiful and Deadly

New images of the H5N1 virus were released this week. The images are the work of science photographer Lennart Nilsson, who is well known for his imaging of human conception and development of the baby within the womb. These images were first printed in Swedish daily Dagens Nyeter. Nilsson originally asked the US government for H5N1 virus samples but was turned away. He was able to obtain the virus from the World Health Organization and used a scanning electron microscope to make the images. The virus is strangely beautiful in these images, seen as blue orbs attacking healthy pink cells. But keep in mind that it is deadly, as the samples came from a father and daughter in Hong Kong who died after being infected two years ago. I combined the images with a photo of Nilsson (credit Jacob Forsell) and a music bed by Silvermay.

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