Thursday, 18 April 2013

This image is Magnificent! Utterly impressive beauty in the Axon terminal.

(Electron microscope image taken by Tina Carvalho from the University of Hawaii)

Here is a stunning electron microscope image taken of an axon terminal. It is a great example of beauty in biology and represents how science is the poetry of reality. The pseudo-colouring in the image identifies the neurotransmitter containing vesicles used for the chemical propagation of a neurones electrical action potential. These vesicles cross the synapse between one cell and another and then ignite a subsequent action potential in the next cell.

If that's excited your taste for neurobiology (which it should have!) and would like to learn the basics of cell physiology and neuronal communication, this webpage has a good introduction for you.   

For more impressive snapshots of the art in neuroscience, buy Portraits of the Mind by Carl Schoonover.