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Messenger flowers

Bouquet of NMJA coloration produced by antibodies makes the communication between nerves and muscles—or neuromuscular junctions—appear like flowers in bloom.  As seen through a swept-field laser confocal microscope, the green stems are nerve terminals, the blue patches the cell nuclei, and the contact zones appear in red. The image is the work of anatomist Selma Michelin Matheus and used in the doctoral work of Cristiane Pissulin on the effects of laser therapy in minimizing lesions caused by Bupivacaine, a widely used surgical anesthetic. The photograph was a Royal Microscopy Society finalist in the competition held during the Microscience Microscopy Congress, June 29 – July 2, 2015 in Manchester, England.

Image provided by Selma Michelin Matheus of the Institute of Biosciences at São Paulo State University (Unesp) in Botucatu