About Ilus Art


ilus, pronounced “ē-loos”, means beautiful in Estonia 
ilus brings you cellular biotech art!

At ilus, we discovered art in the laboratory…in the beautiful images of human cells that reflect life at the microscopic level. We find beauty in an unseen world.

Our scientists “stain” cells for a variety of experiments in the field of regenerative medicine – the pictures they capture are used to validate their research. As art, we think they are as unique and individual as you are.

We hope that this art is able to catch your eye and touch your heart. We think this artwork creates an opportunity to start conversations in your home, office, or school about science. We hope it inspires you!

The Science Behind Our Art

To create the images, cells are first grown on glass coverslips and chemically fixed to preserve the structure and appearance of the cells. The cells are then treated with fluorescent probes, such as antibodies and dyes, which recognize and bind specific molecules in the cell. Visualization and image capture of the fluorescent probes is accomplished using a digital camera attached to a microscope. This microscope is equipped with an ultraviolet light source and filters to reveal the location and intensity of the probes bound to their associated molecules and structures within the cell.

About the CEO

Janet Hubka has spent over 30 years managing multispecialty healthcare practices, in both the non-profit and for-profit sectors. For the past twelve years, she served as Executive Director of the Osteopathic Center for Children, working closely with world renowned osteopath, Dr. Viola Frymann. The OCC specializes in treating children with birth trauma, seizure disorders, cerebral palsy and other developmental conditions. Janet also helped coordinate professional educational and relicensing seminars held at the Center as well as work on fundraising projects for the non-profit health center. She recently retired from the Osteopathic Center for Children to work full time on ilus. With family in California and Texas, she spends most of her free time on airplanes.

Our Artists

Michael Zimber

Dr. Zimber is a biomedical research scientist with a multi-disciplinary background in developmental biology, neuroscience, cell and tissue engineering and regenerative medicine. His passion for imaging cells extends the course of his career as it is a reflection of his scientific interest in exploring the relationship between form and function of the cells and tissues in the organism.

More about Dr. Zimber

Dr. Zimber received his B.S. in Biological Sciences from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and Ph.D. in Neuroscience from Washington State University. He holds patents in regenerative medicine, has authored numerous peer-reviewed publications and presentations and is affiliated with several scientific societies. He began his scientific career conducting developmental biology research on tissue pattern formation in the regenerating amphibian limb, and his doctoral work in neuroscience focused on elements of intracellular signaling and ion channel biophysics in neuronal cell types.

Dr. Zimber has acquired more than 20 years of interdisciplinary experience in the biotechnology industry working on a wide range of projects in the fields of cell biology, tissue engineering and regenerative medicine. His first industrial job was to work on creating monoclonal antibody-based protein therapeutics in which he designed, constructed and operated hollow fiber mammalian cell bioreactor systems. From there, he gained extensive experience in tissue engineering developing in vitro techniques and bioreactor systems to generate FDA-approved products for human therapeutic applications. This research created several types of three-dimensional tissue constructs using cells and tissues derived from articular cartilage, pancreatic, central nervous system, vascular, and dermal-epithelial sources. Dr. Zimber also has many years of experience evaluating small molecule and biological therapeutics to treat spinal cord injury and neurodegenerative disorders. In addition to his focus on spinal cord injury, the research also tested the potential therapeutics using models of stroke, multiple sclerosis, and congestive heart failure. Currently, Dr. Zimber serves as the Director of Applied Research at Histogen, a regenerative medicine company based in San Diego, where he is active in the research, manufacturing and clinical development of cell-derived bioengineered products for dermatology, wound healing and orthopedic indications.

Kelsea Hubka

Kelsea Hubka, received her B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles.  She worked for 4 years in industry with Histogen, a regenerative medicine company, where she worked directly under Dr. Michael Zimber.  In 2012, Kelsea obtained her Master’s in Bioengineering from Rice University and is now conducting research towards a PhD.  Her current work is investigating bone regeneration and repair utilizing co-cultures of native bone marrow stem cells and biodegradable polymer scaffolds in the field of bone tissue engineering.

Affiliated Artist Program

If you are a scientist who has unique images that complement our site – we would be happy to discuss what it would take to become an Affiliated Artist. Please contact us.


We believe in giving back

All of the ilus artwork has its origin in the laboratory. These prints are actually the data collected by scientists to quantify their research. These research scientists, whether in private or public institutions, spend their days looking for the source of disease and identifying treatments that make life for all of us better. We honor their commitment by donating a portion of our proceeds to oncology, orthopedic and regenerative medicine research. Ilus also supports local companies that supply the research community, like BIOCOM, CONNECT and the Regenerative Medicine Foundation.