How it all started ...
Another view down the microscope, this time looking at a thin slice through an ovary. The small round structure in the centre of the photograph is an oocyte, a developing, unfertilised egg. The even smaller round structure within the oocyte is the nucleus. Once the egg is shed and fertilised, the nucleus will contain all of the information that the egg needs to develop into a new individual.
The egg sits in a space known as the antrum, and is bathed in follicular fluid surrounded by the follicular cells. The whole structure is known as a Graafian follicle. It is named after the Dutch anatomist Reinier de Graaf (1641–73).
The ovary happens to be that of a cow, but we all looked very much the same at that early stage in our lives!