Current Students and Staff

// University News

21 Feb 2018

University staff member places third in scientific photo competition

Loughborough University researcher has reached third place in a national photo competition with this stunning image of neurons interacting with muscle fibres.

Dr Andrew Capel from the School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences submitted this photograph to the ‘Eureka and Discovery’ category and was awarded with third place. ‌

The photo – which was taken at Queen’s Medical Centre in Nottingham – shows neurons (in green) and muscle fibres (in red) and was captured with a specialist microscope, known as a confocal microscope.

It was submitted to the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) science photo competition, which encourages all EPSRC-supported researchers and doctoral students to share fascinating photos from research in action.

Dr Andrew Capel said: “To be recognised by EPSRC for this photograph is a fantastic achievement and testament to the magnificent research being conducted by Professor Mark Lewis and Dr Steve Christie, as well as our campus wide collaborators, specifically the members of the mini-CDTs in smart prosthetics and brain on a chip.”

Professor Tom Rhodden, EPSRC’s Deputy Chief Executive commented: “Every year we are stunned by the quality and creativity of the entries into our competition and this year has been no exception.

“They show that our researchers want to tell the world about the beauty of science and engineering.”

To gain a better understanding of how neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s progress within the human body, Dr Capel is trying to create biologically accurate models of the nerve-muscle interface to test potential treatments.

To avoid ethical issues and inaccuracy, a 3D tissue engineered model of a neuromuscular junction (NMJ) was created rather than the more traditional method of using animal models.