Published: 28-06-2024 12:57 | Updated: 28-06-2024 13:01

Lennart Nilsson Award 2024 is awarded to Csaba Adori

Large pyramidal neurons (green) and dense amyloid plaques (red)  in the cortex of a person who died in Alzheimer’s disease.
Large pyramidal neurons (green) and dense amyloid plaques (red) in the cortex of a person who died in Alzheimer’s disease. Photo: Csaba Adori

Csaba Adori, neurobiologist at the Department of Molecular Biosciences, Stockholm University, and affiliated to the Department of Neuroscience at Karolinska Institutet, receives the award for his outstanding work in 3D imaging of the body’s tissues.

Portrait of Csaba outdoors on KI's campus in Solna.
Csaba Adori, researcher at the Department of Neuroscience. Photo: N/A

Csaba Adori's detailed images and 3D movies of tissues allow the viewer to take a visual journey through several of the body’s organs. This has significantly contributed to increasing our understanding of the structure of various organs and the development of disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease, fatty liver disease (MAFLD), and cancer.

Csaba, what does it feel like to receive the award?

"The nomination itself was already a great honor to me and I would like to express my gratitude to all those esteemed colleagues who initiated it and joined my nomination.

I am also deeply thankful to all the colleagues who helped me over the past eight years in the field of 3D microscopy: those who inspired and taught me, provided various tissue samples for imaging, and contributed to funding the essential infrastructure. 

This award gives med encouragement and reinforces my commitment to continue the journey with 3D microscopy, which hasn't always been easy. Lastly, I am particularly delighted that the scientific, educational, and aesthetic potential of this imaging approach has been recognized by this award. In an era of single-cell and omics technologies, we should not forget that cells and biomolecules are spatially organized within tissues, and these tissue structures exist in three dimensions in the organisms."

Do you have any new projects in the works?

"My primary research interest lies in the noradrenergic system, encompassing both the peripheral and central nervous systems. In 2021, utilizing whole-mount immuno-imaging and tissue clearing techniques, we discovered that the sympathetic (noradrenergic) nerves undergo selective and progressive neurodegeneration in fatty liver disease, observed in both humans and an experimental animal model. Following up this work, I am currently studying the functional implications of this degeneration. Furthermore, through various animal models, we are investigating whether this nerve degeneration is reversible after treating obese animals with compounds known for their ‘anti-obesity’ effects. My other project involves following up on my 2022 paper about the 3D cytoarchitecture and tau pathology of the human noradrenergic nucleus locus coeruleus. In both projects, 3D plays a crucial role. Additionally, I am involved in several collaborative projects." 


Csaba Adori is awarded the 2024 Lennart Nilsson Award for his scientific 3D photography of tissues. In the spirit of Lennart Nilsson, he reveals not only the scientific aspects of the tissue structure or its pathology, but also the beauty of anatomical details. His artistic images provide an overview of several millimeters with micrometer resolution, contributing to the scientific understanding of structures such as the inner ear and the human brainstem. His material is used in teaching, and he reaches outside the academic world by sharing videos of the human 3D microcosmos, provoking curiosity and fascination.

The Lennart Nilsson Award Foundation

The Lennart Nilsson Award Foundation was established in 1998 in recognition of the world-renowned Swedish photographer Lennart Nilsson and his extraordinary body of work. The main aim is to promote education, training, and research within the medical, biological, and engineering sciences through the use of images. This is achieved through the Lennart Nilsson Award, an international award bestowed annually upon an individual in recognition of outstanding contributions within the realm of scientific photography.