BPoD has moved!

BPoD has recently changed our domain name - we can now be found at bpod.org.uk

Please update your bookmarks!

Now in our 13th year of bringing you beautiful imagery from biomedical science every day

Search the archive of over 4000 images

Neglected Diseases Week Neglected Siege Tactics
01 March 2013

Neglected Siege Tactics

Sieges are a tried and tested tactic in war: if you can stop supplies passing through a city's gates, it won't be long before it surrenders. This principle also works on a microscopic scale, and could be important in the fight against sleeping sickness. The parasite that causes the disease has only one pathway to absorb and excrete chemicals, located in an area called the flagellar pocket. Using a nanoparticle, which attaches itself to the parasite's surface, scientists can disrupt this vital gateway and stop the free movement of substances. The pocket (stained brighter green) of parasites exposed to this nanoparticle (third and forth columns) becomes swollen and distended, compared to those covered in a similar, but inert molecule (first and second column). With its supply line cut, the parasite quickly dies, offering hope to 30,000 sufferers across Africa at risk of coma and death from the disease.

Written by Jan Piotrowski

Search The Archive

Submit An Image

Follow on Tumblr

Follow on Instagram

What is BPoD?

BPoD stands for Biomedical Picture of the Day. Managed by the MRC Laboratory of Medical Sciences until Jul 2023, it is now run independently by a dedicated team of scientists and writers. The website aims to engage everyone, young and old, in the wonders of biology, and its influence on medicine. The ever-growing archive of more than 4000 research images documents over a decade of progress. Explore the collection and see what you discover. Images are kindly provided for inclusion on this website through the generosity of scientists across the globe.

Read More

BPoD is also available in Catalan at www.bpod.cat with translations by the University of Valencia.