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LM of single human sperm fertilising an egg

LM of single human sperm fertilising an egg

P648/0045

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Credit

RICHARD RAWLINS / CUSTOM MEDICAL STOCK PHOTO / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY RICHARD RAWLINS / CUSTOM MEDICAL STOCK PHOTO / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Sperm fertilising egg. Coloured light micrograph of a single sperm fertilising a human egg. The human female produces usually a single large egg or ovum (at right, granular). At upper centre, a single sperm is penetrating the egg's wall to fuse with the egg nucleus. When this happens, the egg membrane forms a barrier to other sperm. The male releases some 300 million much smaller sperm (spermatozoa) which travel with whiplash movements of their tail through the uterus, to reach the egg. Only a few hundred sperm survive this journey and encounter the egg in the fallopian tube, and only one sperm can succeed in fertilisation.

Release details

Model release not required. Property release not required.

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