Meet Michael Astrachan, XVIVO’s Founder and President

From airbrushing t-shirts at malls around Connecticut to producing his own scientific illustration and animation studio, Michael Astrachan merged the logical left side of his brain with the creative right to establish XVIVO 17 years ago. He was chosen to tell his story and discuss his company’s development with WTNH’s Ann Nyberg; an interview made possible by the recommendation of the Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development, which recognized XVIVO for its growing success within our community.

Since XVIVO’s inception, this interview is among the company’s many proud moments, one of which is highlighted in the interview: BioVisions – The Inner Life of the Cell: Protein Packing. Produced in conjunction with Harvard University researchers, XVIVO animators developed a sequence in which the camera enters a dense protein-packed neuron, demonstrating vibrations at a molecular level. And because the subject matter is smaller than the wavelength of light and therefore exist at a scale without color, the door opens for Michael and his team to exercise their creative freedom and choose colors to tell their scientific stories.

These highly developed projects are made possible by a team of medical illustrators, PhD-level writers, animators, and more — whose diverse talents blend seamlessly to produce tailored animations and illustrations for a variety of clients, including startups, pharma, biotech, and universities.

Looking Ahead

With new technology, software and hardware becoming more ubiquitous, XVIVO is already looking to reshape the future of scientific animation — offering interactive components, exploring virtual reality, and more.

Watch the video for the full interview between Michael Astrachan and Ann Nyberg below:


I wanted to share with you the news I just heard that the fabulous image you prepared for us has been selected for the cover of Cell! This is wonderful testimony to your talent and ability to rapidly reduce an idea to a stunning illustration. We were particularly impressed with your responsiveness and ability to quickly make significant modifications to meet our external deadlines. Many thanks for all your help, and congratulations!

Richard P. Lifton: Chairman, Yale University Department of Genetics; Sterling Professor of Genetics, Medicine and Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry; Investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute
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