BIOPHOTO ASSOCIATES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY BIOPHOTO ASSOCIATES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Human chromosome. Coloured Scanning Electron Micrograph (SEM) of a single human chromosome. This thread-like structure occurs in the nucleus of every cell, and appears in this shape at meta- phase of cell division. It carries genetic information in the form of genes. A chromosome consists of two strands (chromatids) joined in a region known as the centromere or kinetochore (upper centre). Chromosomes can make exact copies of themselves while the cell is resting between cell divisions. When a chromosome divides, the centromere splits longitudinally. Apart from the sex cells, all human cells contain 46 chromosomes. Magnification: x6,670 at 6x7cm size.
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