Colour SEM of the rear sucker of a medicinal leech

Colour SEM of the rear sucker of a medicinal leech

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This image is part of the feature Parasites

Credit: EYE OF SCIENCE/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Leech sucker. Coloured scanning electron micro- graph (SEM) of the rear sucker of the medicinal leech, Hirudo medicinalis. This parasite has two suckers, one on each end of its body. It uses these to attach itself to the skin of its victims whilst it drinks their blood; the mouth is contained within the head sucker. An inhabitant of freshwater lakes and streams, H. medicinalis may be used medicinally for dissolving or draining accumulated blood (a haematoma) and for drawing blood into transplanted tissue until circulation is established. Magnification: x15 at 6x6cm size.

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Keywords: animal, bionic, bionics, hirudinea, hirudo medicinalis officinalis, invertebrate, invertebrates, leech, medicinal, medicinal leech, nature, sucker, wildlife, zoology

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