STEVE GSCHMEISSNER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY STEVE GSCHMEISSNER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Smell receptor. Transmission electron micrograph (TEM) of a section through the olfactory epithelium that lines the nasal cavity, showing an olfactory cell (smell receptor) and its cilia (hair-like projections). Olfactory receptors are bipolar neurons (nerve cells) that transmit 'smell' information to the brain. The cilia are covered with a sticky mucus (not seen) that traps dust and other inhaled particles. Co-ordinated, wave-like beating of the cilia propels the mucus to the back of the nose (pharynx), where it is swallowed. Magnification: x5000 when printed 10 centimetres wide.
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