ALFRED PASIEKA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY ALFRED PASIEKA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Heart muscle. Light micrograph of healthy heart (cardiac) muscle, seen in longitudinal section. Bundles of muscle fibres are stained red, running diagonally from upper right to lower left. Fibres are joined end to end by intercalated discs (not visible), forming a continuous network which allows for efficient tranmission and regulation of muscle contraction. Fibre bundles are joined across spaces (white) by connective tissue. This connective tissue also occurs between muscle cells and is extremely rich in blood capillaries. The high concentration of blood vessels in heart muscle reflects its demand for oxygen and high performance. Magnification: x125 at 6x7cm size.
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