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Adult mouse foot
During development, limbs begin as tiny buds at defined points along the embryo. Soon after a bud emerges, a distinct zone of cells arises called the apical ectodermal ridge (ARE), located where the tips of your fingers are as an adult. The ARE ensures the continuous, outward growth of the limb and helps organize the sculpting process for digits. Failure to maintain the ARE can result in physical deformities, such as polydactyly (multiple digits) and ectrodactyly (cleft hand).
Image by Dr. Andrew Woolley and Kevin Otto, Purdue University, Adelaide, Australia.

Adult mouse foot

During development, limbs begin as tiny buds at defined points along the embryo. Soon after a bud emerges, a distinct zone of cells arises called the apical ectodermal ridge (ARE), located where the tips of your fingers are as an adult. The ARE ensures the continuous, outward growth of the limb and helps organize the sculpting process for digits. Failure to maintain the ARE can result in physical deformities, such as polydactyly (multiple digits) and ectrodactyly (cleft hand).

Image by Dr. Andrew Woolley and Kevin Otto, Purdue University, Adelaide, Australia.

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This is a user submitted image!
Small intestinal section from a mouse
Tiny, finger-like projections called villi cover the length of your small intestine, aiding in absorption of nutrients from digested food. Villi dramatically increase the surface area of the intestines to maximize the amount of space that can actively take up broken down food into the bloodstream. In fact, the average surface area of the (stretched out) human gut is about 300 m2, larger than the size of a doubles tennis court.
Image by Dr. Bryan Millis, NIDCD, National Institutes of Health.

Small intestinal section from a mouse

Tiny, finger-like projections called villi cover the length of your small intestine, aiding in absorption of nutrients from digested food. Villi dramatically increase the surface area of the intestines to maximize the amount of space that can actively take up broken down food into the bloodstream. In fact, the average surface area of the (stretched out) human gut is about 300 m2, larger than the size of a doubles tennis court.

Image by Dr. Bryan Millis, NIDCD, National Institutes of Health.

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Match It Monday!
Plant stem, neural stem cells, or a alveoli in lungs? How did you fare?
Though not the most popular guess, this is actually a micrograph of neural stem cells specializing into mature neurons. Blue staining marks the nuclei of cells, while green and red staining mark growing axons, which can be seen growing on the periphery. This intricate pattern probably arose due to a specialized matrix on which the cells were cultured. Neural stem cells hold tremendous promise in regenerative medicine and drug discovery as they provide an essentially limitless supply of cells that can be turned into desired cell types of the nervous system.
Image by Regis Grailhe and Arnaud Ogier, Institut Pasteur, Seongnam, Korea.

Match It Monday!

Plant stem, neural stem cells, or a alveoli in lungs? How did you fare?

Though not the most popular guess, this is actually a micrograph of neural stem cells specializing into mature neurons. Blue staining marks the nuclei of cells, while green and red staining mark growing axons, which can be seen growing on the periphery. This intricate pattern probably arose due to a specialized matrix on which the cells were cultured. Neural stem cells hold tremendous promise in regenerative medicine and drug discovery as they provide an essentially limitless supply of cells that can be turned into desired cell types of the nervous system.

Image by Regis Grailhe and Arnaud Ogier, Institut Pasteur, Seongnam, Korea.

177 notes
This is a user submitted image!
Radula of Buccinum undatum, common whelk
Gastropods like this marine snail use their radula, a rake-like feeding organ, to scrape food from surfaces. Marine snails, however, are extremely sensitive to tributyltin (TBT), a group of compounds used to prevent marine organisms from accumulating on surfaces. Just trace amounts of TBT leached into sea water causes marine snails to suffer from imposex, a disorder where females develop male sexual characteristics. This shortens snail lifespan and results in infertility or death. Not only is TBT a threat to marine snail populations, but it also can biomagnify up the snail’s food web, causing concentrations of TBT to rise exponentially higher up the food chain.
Image by Dr. David Maitland.

Radula of Buccinum undatum, common whelk

Gastropods like this marine snail use their radula, a rake-like feeding organ, to scrape food from surfaces. Marine snails, however, are extremely sensitive to tributyltin (TBT), a group of compounds used to prevent marine organisms from accumulating on surfaces. Just trace amounts of TBT leached into sea water causes marine snails to suffer from imposex, a disorder where females develop male sexual characteristics. This shortens snail lifespan and results in infertility or death. Not only is TBT a threat to marine snail populations, but it also can biomagnify up the snail’s food web, causing concentrations of TBT to rise exponentially higher up the food chain.

Image by Dr. David Maitland.

153 notes
This is a user submitted image!
Crystallized tartrazine
Also known as FD&C Yellow 5 or E102, tartrazine is a yellow dye commonly used in processed goods like ice cream, soft drinks, moisturizers, pet foods, and crayons. Of all azo dyes, tartrazine frequently causes allergic and intolerant reactions, though the mechanism of sensitivity is not clear. While conflicting studies have been published regarding its role in promoting hyperactive behaviors in children, tartrazine is being voluntarily phased out in many countries in Europe. In the United States, foods or drugs containing tartrazine must declare the chemical on their ingredients list; the Food and Drug Administration frequently seizes imported products containing undeclared tartrazine.
Image by Frederic Labaune.

Crystallized tartrazine

Also known as FD&C Yellow 5 or E102, tartrazine is a yellow dye commonly used in processed goods like ice cream, soft drinks, moisturizers, pet foods, and crayons. Of all azo dyes, tartrazine frequently causes allergic and intolerant reactions, though the mechanism of sensitivity is not clear. While conflicting studies have been published regarding its role in promoting hyperactive behaviors in children, tartrazine is being voluntarily phased out in many countries in Europe. In the United States, foods or drugs containing tartrazine must declare the chemical on their ingredients list; the Food and Drug Administration frequently seizes imported products containing undeclared tartrazine.

Image by Frederic Labaune.

2,003 notes