Microscopy Primer
Light and Color
Microscope Basics
Special Techniques
Digital Imaging
Confocal Microscopy
Live-Cell Imaging
Microscopy Museum
Virtual Microscopy
Web Resources
License Info
Image Use
Custom Photos
Site Info
Contact Us

The Galleries:

Photo Gallery
Silicon Zoo
Chip Shots
DNA Gallery
Amino Acids
Religion Collection
Cocktail Collection
Screen Savers
Win Wallpaper
Mac Wallpaper
Movie Gallery

Brightfield Microscopy Digital Image Gallery

Prostate Gland (Younger)

The prostate gland is a vital component of the male reproductive system that surrounds the urethra. Similar in size to a walnut in healthy adults, the organ is actually composed of numerous smaller glands that secrete fluids into sperm stores before they exit the body through the urethra.

The development of the prostate gland is dependent on the hormones produced by the testes. In infants, the organ is extremely small, approximately the size of a single grain of wheat. During puberty, which usually occurs in males between the ages of 10 and 14, the prostate enters a period of accelerated growth and typically achieves its mature size. However, the prostates of boys who are castrated before this stage in their life never reach their full functioning capabilities or adult dimensions. In unaltered individuals, the prostate continues to change over time and in the fifth decade of life significant enlargement of the gland is common.

Prostatic fluid, which is produced by the prostate gland, is milky and alkaline, containing a number of various constituents, such as zinc, calcium, citrate, phosphate, and enzymes. The substance is believed to be very important to the fertilization process because the other fluids that comprise semen are acidic, and studies have demonstrated that the sperm cells are most active in a relatively alkaline environment. Moreover, the extra medium for the sperm to inhabit protects them and facilitates their greater mobility, making it easier for them to reach and penetrate the egg of a female.


Questions or comments? Send us an email.
© 1998-2022 by Michael W. Davidson and The Florida State University. All Rights Reserved. No images, graphics, scripts, or applets may be reproduced or used in any manner without permission from the copyright holders. Use of this website means you agree to all of the Legal Terms and Conditions set forth by the owners.
This website is maintained by our
Graphics & Web Programming Team
in collaboration with Optical Microscopy at the
National High Magnetic Field Laboratory.
Last modification: Friday, Nov 13, 2015 at 02:19 PM
Access Count Since November 25, 2003: 29009
All of the images in this gallery were captured with a QImaging Retiga camera system.
For more information on these cameras, use the button below to access
the QImaging website:
Visit the QImaging website.
For more information on microscope manufacturers,
use the buttons below to navigate to their websites: