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The Art in Science

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Abdulsalam Soofi, Research Lab Specialist, Department of Pathology

This image was taken with a scanning electron microscope, which allows researchers to see the surface of cells. These are cultured podocytes (cells in the kidney that are involved in filtration of blood to form urine). Each podocyte sends out elaborate foot processes that interdigitate with the foot processes of other podocytes. These two cells are each sending processes toward the other. The cellular extensions are controlled by genes that form and/or play a role in the filtration system of the intact kidney. Thus, part of the function of the kidney can be studied in a tissue culture dish.