MICROSCAPE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY MICROSCAPE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Light microscopy of a vein (left) and smaller artery (right). Veins have thinner walls than comparable arteries. The wall of the artery consists of layers of smooth muscle for vessel constriction and variable amounts of elastic fibres (thin dark blue lines) to maintain vessel shape and size. Similar but lesser mounts of elastic components in the vein serve to limit vessel expansion. Magnification x400 when printed at 10 cm.
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