Jack was almost right, it’s not as much art as it is diagrams for a science project - but it’s not seeds and trees, it’s actually Purkinje neurons, one of the smallest cells of our bodies, located in the cerebellum, and I believe those are the actual stained neurons drawn by Cajal.
Purkinje cell Professor M Häusser, Sarah Rieubland and Arnd Roth, UCL Winner of the Wellcome Image Awards, 2015. “Scanning electron micrograph of tree-like branches (dendritic tree) spreading out from a particular type of nerve cell (Purkinje cell, or neurone) found in the brain. The finger-like projections in this elaborate network act like tiny sensors, picking up information and passing on messages to help control and coordinate muscle movement. This particular neurone is from the cerebellar cortex in a rat brain.”
Chorea: purposeless movement of limbs, due to a loss of GABAergic neurons of neostriatum (caudate nucleus and putamen) of indirect pathway.
Personality changes, dementia, tendency for suicide
Fragile X Syndrome
CGG trinucleotid repeat
X dominant, FMR 1
Mental retardation, large ears and jaw. post-pubertal macro-orchidism (males), attention deficit disorder (females)
GAA trinucleotid repeat
Autosomal recessive, Frataxin gene, chromosome 9
Neuronal degeneration: dorsal root ganglia, Clarke column (spinocerebellar tract), posterior column of spinal cord, dentate nucleus, Purkinje cells, Betz neurons, CN nuclei of VII, X, XII
Progressive gait & limb ataxia, arreflexia, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, axonal sensory neuropathy, kyphoscoliosis, dysarthria, hand clumsiness, loss of sense of position, impaired vibratory sensation.
Cerebellum (the brain’s locomotion control center) up close
This is a close-up view of the cerebellum, the brain’s locomotion control center. Image courtesy of Thomas Deerinck, National Center for Microscopy and Imaging Research, University of California, San Diego. Part of the exhibit Life:Magnified by ASCB and NIGMS.
Purkinje neurons play an essential role in motor function. Here the Purkinje neurons reach their arbor-like dendrites into the molecular layer of the developing cerebellum of a mouse. The mostly green cells at the bottom left (expand image to full view) are cerebellar granule cells, which relay information from the nervous system to the Purkinje neurons.