Dopamine crystal method

A beautiful image of dopamine crystals viewed with polarized light.

Photo by Spike Walker for Wellcome Images. Click for source

From the description: “A polarized light micrograph of dopamine crystals. Dopamine is a naturally occurring precursor of norepinephrine that affects various brain processes, many of which control movements, emotional responses and the experiences of pain and pleasure. Dopamine receptors are especially clustered in the midbrain. The drug L-DOPA, used to help sufferers of Parkinson’s disease, is converted in the brain to dopamine.”

Link to Creative Commons licensed image at Wellcome (via NewSci).


  1. Posted September 12, 2010 at 3:35 pm | Permalink

    I love this image and the Wellcome Images gallery! Amazing science photos. I even used this particular image as a blog banner for a little while. It’s kind of mesmerizing.

  2. Posted September 13, 2010 at 7:05 pm | Permalink

    Isn’t amazing that something this colorful is responsible for so many human’s physiological or psychological disorders.

    It’s quite poetic that what differentiates us from others, and regulates our emotions is so vivid.

  3. Kevin
    Posted September 13, 2010 at 9:25 pm | Permalink

    Now what would these dopamine crystals look like while LSD is tweaking your dopamine receptors? Inquiring minds want to know.

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