The internal structure of the torturing pebble is not simple.
in the eyes of many people, kidney stones may be incomparably ugly and excruciating pebbles, but if you look at it from another perspective, it also has a pretty side.
these brightly colored fluorescence micrographs show kidney stones, or rather thin sections of kidney stones, from a study recently published in the journal Science. Microscopic observation of rock slices is a common research method for geologists, but similar observation of kidney stones is still a relatively new thing.
(a section and the corresponding kidney stone fragment)
the researchers collected more than 50 kidney stone samples from the hospital, cut thin sections from them, and observed the internal structure of kidney stones with a series of optical and electron microscopy. The results show that these kidney stones are by no means a uniform and simple crystal of calcium oxalate: on the outside of the initial crystallization, layer after layer of organic matter and new crystals are overlapped, and traces of repeated dissolution and re-formation of crystals can be found.
in the past, the medical profession often thought that kidney stones could not dissolve themselves in the kidney, but the internal structure of kidney stones showed that they had been in a cycle of continuous dissolution and re-growth of crystals. It also means that we may be able to find a way to fully dissolve the stone in the kidney and turn it into a new treatment.
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original thesis: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-018-31890-9
Picture Source: Mayandi Sivaguru, Jessica Saw from Bruce Fouke Lab, Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology, U. Of I.
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