Through a lens darkly

By oojeyboojey

Off the hoof

You might not realise it, but when horses and ponies are sent to the abattoir, their legs are simply thrown away. Other parts are sold for meat or textiles.

In my research group, we don't like to see things go to waste. So every month or so, intrepid research scientists head to the abattoir to pick up samples. Waste not want not! Horse suffer from similar types of arthritis as people, so it's very important to use these limbs in arthritis research.

This rather macabre specimen was made by injecting (blue) resin into the veins of a horse hoof, then dissolving the tissue away just leaving the resin behind. What you're left with is a perfect model of the circulatory system running through the hoof. It makes for an excellent teaching resource but it is rather grim to look at!

Apologies if you were expecting a rainbow after yesterday's optics blip - it will come, I promise, just not today!

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