Hello again, I finally buckled down to take a look at something I’ve wanted to do for a while now. Can you guess what this is? Human breastmilk!
I used the two-well slide and spread it out to a very thin film of liquid. All the while my 19 month old toddler was literally climbing on my back and/or playing with the accessories kit items. I had some really significant challenges focusing and operating the camera phone – I could see these structures so much clearer by eye. And they moved around!
I also tried using the microwell slide which created a thicker layer of liquid. It was successful but with so many more globules the individual structures aren’t as dramatic.
What I really wanted to do was compare fresh milk with frozen then thawed milk. But the toddler was uninterested in the many steps it would require me to prepare this comparison.
I went to clean up – wash off the conveniently reusable slide and covers – and make myself some tea. Mommy making tea is -super- boring, and the toddler wandered off to get a head start pulling out the toy bins and dumping them on the floor. Since I had the cow’s milk out for the tea and newly cleaned slides…
With store bought, homogenized and pasteurized cow’s milk there was nothing to see (at 140X). I’m guessing that it’s the homogenizing and pasteurizing process that made such a big difference between the samples as opposed to the species of origin.
I don’t actually know what those little spherical structures are in the breastmilk and I haven’t had a chance to really research it. I’m thinking it might be fats – the cow’s milk sample doesn’t separate. I could test this theory by allowing the breastmilk to separate before imaging. And I’m still interested in what thawed frozen milk will look like. If you have access to fresh cow or goat milk – can you take a look for me?