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Illinois IGB


Art of Science Gallery 04

Straining sinew
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Image provided by Mayandi Sivaguru, Core Facilities

Research funded by the American Quarter Horse Association

Athletic activities are hard on tendons, the connective tissue that connects muscle to bone, in people and animals alike. Tendons are made of a protein called collagen. To better understand tendon injuries, researchers injected a horse tendon with a chemical that degrades collagen. They then used images like this one, which shows the structure of the collagen fibers within the tendon, to discover how the structure is affected by damage.