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'Seedling of Thought'


"Seedling of Thought," by Rajashekar Iyer, Martha Gillette Laboratory.

Part of the Art of Science program at the Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology at the University of Illinois (U of I), this delicate structure is a single brain cell (neuron) from a region of the brain called the hippocampus, which contributes to the formation and recall of memories. The many elaborate branches seen here are neurites; information is exchanged between neurons at synapses, where neurites meet. Images like this one enable the study of neurite development, helping researchers understand what goes wrong in diseases of brain development. The image was taken with a Zeiss LSM 880 Airyscan. [Research supported by the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health.]

This image was part of the seventh annual Art of Science exhibit at the University of Illinois Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology (IGB). Learn more about the Art of Science program. (Date image taken: 2017; date originally posted to NSF Multimedia Gallery: ) (Date image taken: 2017; date originally posted to NSF Multimedia Gallery: June 11, 2018)

Credit: Rajashekar Iyer, graduate research assistant, Cell and Developmental Biology, Martha Gillette Laboratory, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

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