Seeing the Invisible

Leveraging a rich history of advancing biological discovery to a better world, the Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL) has created the Imaging Innovation Initiative. The MBL has long been at the forefront of developing new approaches to imaging and applying those methods to biological questions.

The Imaging Innovation Initiative, based inside the historic Lillie Laboratory, enables the MBL and the broader scientific community to stay abreast of the latest technological advances for a better understanding of basic biology. A special focus on the light microscope-level of live imaging allows us to see at a level never seen before. 

The Imaging Innovation Initiative, along with the New Research Organisms strategic initiative, supports all areas of research at the MBL including Microbiomes, Ecosystems, Regeneration and Development, and Cell Biology.

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Increasing the Speed of Innovation

A Global Leader in Life Sciences

To address a new set of biological questions, the nature of which were unfathomable only a decade ago, the MBL has established a year-round collaborative center for research and training in next-generation light microscopy and computational image analysis. Recent advances in light microscopy are creating unprecedented opportunities for understanding living systems. 

By coupling new imaging and gene editing technologies, computation, and the marine life accessible at its doorstep, the MBL is a center for collaboration and discovery for the world’s leading scientists. 

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Getting Involved with the MBL

Whether exploring the rich diversity of life in oceans and coastal marshes or uncovering the molecular details of the inner workings of cells from diverse organisms, the MBL is uniquely positioned to address existing biological questions in new ways as well as tackling new biological questions. By supporting the MBL’s mission or attending public events, the general public can help the MBL foster growth in optical imaging techniques and data science.  

Support the MBL’s Mission View Upcoming Public Events

Imaging Committee


  • Amy Gladfelter, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill; MBL Whitman Center Scientist and MBL Fellow
  • Patrick La Riviere, University of Chicago; MBL Whitman Center Scientist and MBL Fellow

Committee Members:

  • Zoe Cardon, Marine Biological Laboratory
  • Ibrahim Cisse, Max Planck Institute of Immunobiology and Epigenetics
  • Daniel Colon-Ramos, Yale School of Medicine
  • Karen Echeverri, Marine Biological Laboratory, New Research Organisms Committee Liaison
  • Daniel Fletcher, University of California Berkeley
  • Scott Fraser, University of Southern California
  • Louis Kerr, Marine Biological Laboratory
  • Abhishek Kumar, Marine Biological Laboratory
  • Paul Maddox, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • Rudolf Oldenbourg, Marine Biological Laboratory
  • Josh Rosenthal, Marine Biological Laboratory, New Research Organisms Committee Liaison
  • Hari Shroff, Howard Hughes Medical Institute
  • Clare Waterman, National Institutes of Health