As a public health precaution due to COVID-19, all Smithsonian museums and the National Zoo are temporarily closed. We are not announcing a reopening date at this time and will provide updates on our website and social media.



Usage conditions apply
Description (Brief)
This videotape is the original copy of a recording of microscopic imagery of cells that have been shot with microprojectiles (tiny bullets) using a prototype biolistic gene gun. Biolistic gene guns are used to genetically transform plants by shooting microprojectiles covered in DNA into plant cells. The video shows microprojectiles inside of living cells. In some shots cytoplasmic streaming can be seen moving the microprojectiles around in the cells. The recording is approximately 30 minutes long and has no sound.
To learn more about biolistic gene guns, please see gene gun prototype II (object number 1991.0785.02) or gene gun prototype III (object number 1991.0785.01.1).
Currently not on view
Object Name
Physical Description
plastic (overall material)
average spatial: 2.5 cm x 12.7 cm x 20.3 cm; in x 5 in x 8 in
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Biological Sciences
Science & Mathematics
Biotechnology and Genetics
Biolistic Gene Guns
Data Source
National Museum of American History
Nominate this object for photography.   

Our collection database is a work in progress. We may update this record based on further research and review. Learn more about our approach to sharing our collection online.

If you would like to know how you can use content on this page, see the Smithsonian's Terms of Use. If you need to request an image for publication or other use, please visit Rights and Reproductions.

Note: Comment submission on our collection pages is temporarily unavailable. Please check back soon!

If you have a question or require a personal response, please visit our FAQ or contact page.