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Illinois IGB


Art of Science 08

Human Kidney
Magia Naturalis

Zeiss LSM 880 Microscope with Airyscan

Jessica Saw and Mayandi Sivaguru

Bruce Fouke and Derek Wildman Laboratories

Funded by Mayo Clinic, the Mayo Clinic and University of Illinois Strategic Alliance for Technology-Based Healthcare, and NASA
This stone, shown in cross-section, was formed with the aid of microbes in a warm, dark, salty hot spring—the inside of a human kidney. The multiple colors and sharp lines mark where the stone dissolved and recrystallized, fractured and reformed over time, trapping organic matter inside as it came back together. By comparing stone formation in geological and medical settings, researchers are gaining new insights into kidney stone treatment and prevention.