JAMES KING-HOLMES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY JAMES KING-HOLMES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
ICSI technique of "in vitro fertilisation". Video light microscope view of the process of in vitro fertilisation (IVF), in which a human egg (ovum) is being injected with sperm. This is the ICSI technique (intra-cytoplasmic sperm injection). At right, a micro-needle has penetrated the circular egg cytoplasm to inject immobile sperm. At left is a pipette used to hold the egg steady while the needle is inserted. The ICSI technique ensures penetration of the egg, without wasting millions of sperm. Some eggs, however, do not survive ICSI due to needle damage. Nonetheless the technique achieves high fertilisation rates. Photographed at the NURTURE reproductive unit in Nottingham, UK. Magnification: x3000 when printed at 10 centimetres wide.
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