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Blood clot Featured SEM Print

Blood clot

Blood clot. Coloured Scanning Electron Micrograph (SEM) of a blood clot, also known as a thrombus. Red blood cells (erythrocytes) are seen trapped in a web of white fibrin threads made of an insoluble protein. Small platelets (green) have also become enmeshed in the clot. When activated, platelets become spiky (as here), clump together and release chemical factors into the blood. These factors cause fibrin threads to form. A white blood cell of the immune system is also trapped (yellow). A clot forms when a blood vessel is injured or diseased. A clot that forms inside a blood vessel may lead to a heart attack if it blocks a heart artery. Magnification: x4, 200 at 6x7cm size. x2, 100 at 35mm size

© Cnri/Science Photo Library

Eye anatomy, SEM Featured SEM Print

Eye anatomy, SEM

Eye anatomy. Coloured scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of part of the ciliary body (red/yellow) of the eye, a ring-shaped structure inside the eye, surrounding the iris. This view looks at part of the ciliary body (arching from upper left to lower right), as seen from inside the eye. Part of the iris is seen at lower left. Part of the choroid (outer layer of the eye) is at top right. The ciliary body joins to ligaments that hold the lens in place behind the iris. The lens has been removed here. The ciliary body also contains the ciliary muscle that is contracted to alter the curvature of the lens and focus light on the retina at the back of the eye. These structures are at the front of the eye

© Susumu Nishinaga/Science Photo Library

Human egg cell and sperm cells, ESEM Featured SEM Print

Human egg cell and sperm cells, ESEM

Human egg cell and sperm cells, coloured ESEM(environmental scanning electron micrograph).There are three sperm cells (brown) attempting tofertilise the egg cell (ovum, blue). Once one ofthe sperm cells has fertilised the egg cell, rapidchemical changes make the outer layer ( zona pellucida ) of the egg cell thicken, preventing anyof the other sperm cells entering it. The head ofthe successful sperm cell releases geneticmaterial that mixes with the genetic materialin the egg cell. The resulting zygote then has thefull set of genes required to develop into a newhuman. The sperm cell ( spermatozoon, male) and theegg cell ( ovum, female) are the human gametes (reproductive cells). Magnification: x680 whenprinted 10cm wide

© Thierry Berrod, Mona Lisa Production/Science Photo Library