Each ovary of the female fruit fly houses multiple ovarioles in which individual egg chambers develop into fully formed fly eggs. Each egg chamber consists of 16 large germline cells (one of which is the future egg cell), surrounded by a thin sheet of smaller cells.
In this picture, cross-sections of ten ovarioles from different female fruit flies are arranged with stem cells and early stage egg chambers at the centre, and the more mature chambers at the periphery. The nucleus of each cell is stained yellow/orange. The cell membranes are stained blue.
This photomicrograph won the “People’s Choice” award in Princeton University’s 2014 Art of Science competition. Now in its seventh year, the Art of Science competition – open to the entire Princeton community – explores the interplay between science and art and consists of images produced during the course of scientific inquiry that have aesthetic merit.
Image credit: Yogesh Goyal, Bomyi Lim, Miriam Osterfield and Stas Shvartsman | Princeton University Art of Science