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Assignment 3
Q2. If the cellularity in cartilage is about one million cells per cc, estimate the
average distance between the cells. Discuss the characteristics of this

Ans2 : The packing density of cells is on the order of a billion cells per cc. Tissues are typically
operating at 1/3 to 1/2 of packing density, leaving typical cell densities in tissues on the order of
100 to 500 million cells per cc. Since the master length scale is about 100 mm, the order of
magnitude of the number of cells found in a tissue microenvironment can be estimated. A 100
mm cube at 500 million cells per cc contains about 500 cells. Simple multicellular organisms
such as C. elegans, a much studied small worm, have about 1000 cells, providing an interesting
comparison. The cellularity of the tissue microenvironment varies among tissues. At the low end
there is cartilage. The function of chondrocytes in cartilage is to maintain the extracellular
matrix. Cartilage is avascular, alymphatic, and aneural. Thus, many of the cell types found in
other tissues are not in cartilage. The cellularity of cartilage is about a million cells per cc or
about one cell per cubic 100 mm. Thus, the microenvironment here is simply one cell that
maintains its surrounding ECM.
Assignment 4

Q5. What is displayed in an MRI image? How is a location from a set of signals in the body

Ans: Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) is a painless and safe diagnostic procedure that uses a
powerful magnet and radio waves to produce detailed images of the body's organs and structures,
without the use of X-rays or other radiation.

An MRI machine aligns the magnetization of some atoms in the body, and radio frequency fields
to systematically alter the alignment of this magnetization. This causes the nuclei to produce a
rotating magnetic field detectable by the scanner and this information is recorded to construct an
image of the scanned area of the body. Strong magnetic field gradients cause nuclei at different
locations to rotate at different speeds. 3-D spatial information can be obtained by providing
gradients in each direction.

MRI provides good contrast between the different soft tissues of the body, which make it
especially useful in imaging the brain, muscles, the heart, and cancers compared with other
medical imaging techniques such as computed tomography (CT) or X-rays. Unlike CT scans or
traditional X-rays, MRI uses no ionizing radiation.

Location Determination:
The body is largely composed of water molecules. Each water molecule has two hydrogen nuclei
or protons. When a person goes inside the powerful magnetic field of the scanner, the magnetic
moments of some of these protons change and align with the direction of the field. A radio
frequency transmitter is briefly turned on, producing a further varying electromagnetic field. The
photons of this field have just the right energy, known as the resonance frequency, to be absorbed
and flip the spin of the aligned protons in the body. The frequency at which the protons resonate
depends on the strength of the applied magnetic field. After the field is turned off, those protons
which absorbed energy revert back to the original lower-energy spin-down state. They release the
difference in energy as a photon, and the released photons are detected by the scanner as an
electromagnetic signal, similar to radio waves.