The never-ending innovations of technology have hit us again, and this time its something very groundbreaking. Recently, the University of Cambridge had partnered up with a 3D image analysis company known as Lume VR Ltd to make a new software called vLume. What is vLume? It’s the future. This new cutting edge technology was developed for scientists to aid them in studying everything from individual proteins to entire cells. How? Well thanks to Lume VR Ltd, vLume allows super-resolution microscopy data to be envisioned and examined in virtual reality.
So you might be wondering, what in the world is super-resolution microscopy? This is basically the reason why we can see such small things in clear high resolution. Essentially, they are approaches to eliminate light diffraction– the slight bending of light which causes low resolution imaging.
Why is this such a big deal?
Numerous reasons! For starters, this breakthrough allows us to mingle with the 3D world of biology as if it were up close and in person. Before, we would try to interact with data through a 2D computer screen. Now, we can see a whole 3D view in virtual reality. This new revolutionary imaging software allows scientists to see, question and play around with 3D biological data, seeming like its real, but its in a virtual environment! This is so important because it allows us to find answers to questions we have about biology immensely quicker. This software allows us to make new discoveries in a blink of an eye. Even a PhD student, Anoushka Handa, said, “It’s incredible — it gives you an entirely different perspective on your work.” This is so cool, she took her own immune cell and was able to virtually stand inside her own cell!
This is so amazing, there has to be a catch?
No, there is no catch! Super-resolution microscopy analysis can be very time consuming, but with the vLume software, it was able to cut the wait times significantly which allows the tests to be quicker and ultimately making analysis quicker. All you will need is a VR!
What does this mean going forward?
With this new technology, who knows what’s next. For now, this software will allow us to further understand the world of biology and it might help develop treatments for diseases that we do not have treatments for now. But, in terms of technology, who knows what’s possible. The thought of being able to stand in a cell seemed like fantasy, but it turns out that it is a reality now. We must be cautious, technology seems like it does good, but there can be some harm involved.
In my non-expert opinion, I think this is a very good sign. This technology is a positive, we can understand more about our world which is very resourceful. I also have emitted my excitement over the course of this article. This is groundbreaking and new which is something I always love to see. The only problem is that people might become reckless with their inventions now. This can be related to our class because we can have a greater understanding of cells and their structure and their functions along with the key organic compounds. Although this tech is used for good, there will be some that’s bad which may be problematic in the future. All in all, this innovation will help us understand ourselves a lot more and it will ultimately be positive in the long run. -Ghohesion