Improvements in microscopy home in on biology's elusive details

In the late 1600s, the Dutch tradesman Anthoni van Leeuwenhoek began investigating the world of the very small using the first microscope, discovering a riotous world of protists, bacteria, and other previously unseen organisms. Subsequent generations of scientists have developed ever-more-sophisticated means of probing the microscopic world, bringing many mysteries of the biological realm into stunning relief.