JOHN BAVOSI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY JOHN BAVOSI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Cervical vertebra with spinal cord. Illustration of a bone from the human spine, showing blood vessels (red and blue), the spinal cord (yellow, centre), nerves (yellow) and cartilage (pale blue). This is a cervical vertebra at the top, the spinous process, provides an attachment site for muscles. The blue tissue surrounding the spinal cord is a protective membrane called the dura mater. The yellow region in the large disc of cartilage at the bottom is a jelly-like substance that helps cushion the spine against movement. The spine has two functions: to support the body and to protect nerves between the brain and the body.
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