Polarised light microscopy of a longitudinal section of the hoof of a horse (Equus ferus caballus). Hooves are composed of layers of keratin (the same substance as forms hair and nails). In addition to hair, most land mammals produce a type of hard keratin, known as horny keratin, in the form of nails, hooves, claws, horns and quills. The ultrastructure of hoof resembles that of hair. Magnification: x28 at 10cm wide.
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