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Scientific Images Bring Research to Life

Blood flow in Fontan circulation - Kelly Jarvis_500This pair of images shows a human heart from the front (left) and back (right) using 4D flow MRI, a special imaging technique that captures the heart’s blood flow at a single moment in time.

The blood colored red is full of oxygen, flowing out to the rest of the body, while the blood colored blue is returning to be re-oxygenated by the lungs. With this technique, scientists can measure the speed and patterns of this flow: yellow and orange streaks move faster than dark red; pale blue moves faster than dark blue. They are examined this particular heart to monitor the heart health of a patient after surgery.

Kelly Jarvis, a graduate student in the lab of Michael Markl, PhD, professor of Radiology, won first place in Northwestern’s Science in Society annual scientific images contest for this illustration of the heart.

Another winner was used for this issue's magazine cover: An embryonic neural cell sits on a bed of nanofibers specifically designed to mimic spinal cord tissue and encourage nerve growth. Image courtesy of Mark McClendon and Zaido Pinto, PhD.

Another winner was used for the cover of this magazine’s print edition. Here, an embryonic neural cell sits on a bed of nanofibers specifically designed to mimic spinal
cord tissue and encourage nerve growth. Image courtesy of Mark McClendon and Zaido Pinto, PhD.