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Light micrograph of a smoker's lung.

Light micrograph of a smoker's lung.

M370/0229

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Credit

ASTRID & HANNS-FRIEDER MICHLER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY ASTRID & HANNS-FRIEDER MICHLER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Light micrograph of a smoker's lung. This field of pulmonary alveoli shows the response of the lung to trauma. Black masses of carbon (smoke) are visible throughout, engulfed by phagocytes from the alveolar walls. The lumens of many of the alveoli contain cells (granular circles) instead of air as in healthy tissue. These are neutrophils, cells typical of the early inflammatory response. They are embedded in a granular exudate. Such damage locally destroys lung function. Magnification: x20 at 35mm size.

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