Pseudostratified columnar ciliated epithelium and
goblet cells trachea
Ronald A. Bergman, Ph.D., Adel K. Afifi, M.D., Paul M. Heidger,
Peer Review Status: Externally Peer Reviewed
Rhesus monkey, Helly's fluid,
modified aldehyde fuchsin stain, 1416 x.
Epithelium: Pseudostratified ciliated columnar epithelium. The term pseudostratified refers to the appearance of the epithelium in section. Although the cells appear to be stratified because the nuclei are found in several layers, the basal portions of all cells are actually in contact with the basement membrane.
Cilia: These motile structures carry a carpet of mucus, provided by goblet cells, which collects inhaled debris and takes it to the pharynx where it is either coughed out or swallowed.
Goblet cells: These non-ciliated mucus-secreting cells are seen in various stages of mucous synthesis and discharge.
Basement membrane: This common structure is thickest in the trachea, but wandering cells of the immune system can be found traversing the membrane. Other cells of the immune system are also seen at various levels of the epithelium.
Lamina propria: The lamina propria of the trachea is thin but contains small blood vessels and collagenous and elastic fibers.
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