Now in our 13th year of bringing you beautiful imagery from biomedical science every day

Search the archive of over 4000 images

Painstaking Details

Ultrasound imaging of nerve-vessel conjunctions in the face – towards treating neuralgia and migraine

08 May 2022

Painstaking Details

A milestone in many pregnancies, harmless pulses of ultrasound waves bend and deflect around chubby limbs and beating hearts – structures too delicate to examine directly, pictured from the patterns they leave behind. Here though, scientists take ultrasound even further. These are trigeminal ganglions, sort of 'hubs' for nerves in the jaw (of a rat in this case) – where bundles of nerve cells rub up against veins and arteries. Ultrasound localisation microscopy highlights streams of microbubbles – piped into the blood they deflect the ultrasound waves, allowing researchers (and their computer algorithms) to map out blood vessels (left) and even spot the direction of flow (right, blue flowing upwards, yellow downwards) and speed (brighter is faster). The technique could now be modified to scan human faces, where knowing more about these neurovascular meeting points may help to treat painful trigeminal neuralgia and facial migraines.

Written by John Ankers

Search The Archive

Submit An Image

Follow on Tumblr

Follow on Instagram

What is BPoD?

BPoD stands for Biomedical Picture of the Day. Managed by the MRC Laboratory of Medical Sciences until Jul 2023, it is now run independently by a dedicated team of scientists and writers. The website aims to engage everyone, young and old, in the wonders of biology, and its influence on medicine. The ever-growing archive of more than 4000 research images documents over a decade of progress. Explore the collection and see what you discover. Images are kindly provided for inclusion on this website through the generosity of scientists across the globe.

Read More

BPoD is also available in Catalan at with translations by the University of Valencia.