Brainy Bridge

By Editorial Staff UCSF Magazine

When she’s not engrossed in engineering proteins, neuroscientist Ashley Smart, PhD ’17, spends her time painting and drawing. One day, she noticed that the beams and supports of the Bay Bridge look astonishingly like neurons. Her vision came to life in this illustration, with the bridge transformed into a neuronal network and neurons also filling the city’s buildings. “Science and art both let me explore the world and share the wonder of how life works,” Smart says. See more of her illustrations at

Cover of UCSF Magazine: left corner reads “UCSF Magazine, Winter 2018”. Black background with a photo slit in half: the right half is a black and white portrait of a female scientist, the left half is a colorful cell image.

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