These Are the First X-Rays of a Living Cell

By Robert Sorokanich

These Are the First X-Rays of a Living Cell

To get a super-detailed X-ray view inside a cell—right down to the individual molecules—scientists dunk the cell they’re looking at in preservative chemicals. That not only kills the cell, it changes its internal structure ever so slightly, meaning researchers aren’t getting an exact look at the cell’s natural state. Now, scientists at Germany’s DESY Research Center have found a way around that, with a technique that’s produced the world’s first X-ray of an individual living cell.

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