Into the Matrix 

Raymond Qin and Niall Geoghegan
Created | 2023

Immune cells need to move through a range of body tissues to hunt out and kill infected or cancerous cells. But many organs and tissues contain fibres made of collagen, a protein found throughout the body, particularly in skin, bones, teeth, ligaments, tendons and other connective tissues.

Using a lattice light-sheet microscope, researchers Raymond and Niall have been able to show in 3D how an immune cell (magenta) contorts into different shapes to find the best route through the dense matrix of collagen fibres (grey).

A better understanding of how immune cells navigate is crucial in helping researchers understand the immune response and find new treatments for a range of diseases.

Music by Margaret Wozniak