STEVE LOWRY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY STEVE LOWRY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Polarised light micrograph of crystals of folic acid, also known as folate, or Vitamin B9. The most well know effect of folate deficiency is defective neural tube development in embryos leading to spina bifida. Folic acid sources include green leafy vegetables, granary bread, dried beans and peas, asparagus, liver and brown rice. Supplements are recommended when trying to conceive and also during the early stages of pregnancy. Vitamin B12 or Vitamin B9 deficiency anaemia results from the production of abnormally large red blood cells that do not function properly. Other effects of deficiency include limb weakness and numbness resulting from nerve damage, shortage of breath, depression and confusion. Magnification: x68 at 10cm wide.
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