Let there be light -- in the battle against cancer cells.
The stunning images above, captured using high-speed laser microscopy, shows a cancer cell isolated on a coverslip, trapped within "walls" of blue light.
Scientists created this cage by inserting a light-sensitive protein from plants into the cell, so that any contact with the light caused the protein to come apart, and the cell's structural "scaffolding" (the white lines within the cell) to collapse.
This makes it impossible for the cell to continue moving in the same direction. In response, the cell turns and tries a different route, with the same result. Thus, the cell is stopped dead in its tracks. The process of manipulating cells with light is called optogenetics.