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Anatomy Atlases: Atlas of Microscopic Anatomy: Section 1 - Cells Atlas of Microscopic Anatomy: Section 3 - Connective Tissue

Plate 3.40: Fat Cells

Panniculus adiposus

Ronald A. Bergman, Ph.D., Adel K. Afifi, M.D., Paul M. Heidger, Jr., Ph.D.
Peer Review Status: Externally Peer Reviewed

Panniculus adiposus

Plate 3.40: Fat Cells

Human, 10% formalin, H. & E., 612 x.

The fat cell lipid is in the form of a single droplet, and these cells are described as unilocular. In brown fat (see Plate 39), the lipid appears as small multiple droplets, and these cells are described as multilocular.

Fat cell cytoplasm: This appears as a thin rim at the periphery of the cell. Stored fat is the predominant component of cytoplasm.

Fat cell nucleus: The nucleus is flattened in the cytoplasm, permitting maximum storage of fat globules.

Fat globules: These appear as empty spaces because the fat has been dissolved out by solvents used in the preparation of tissues. Special fixatives and stains are needed to demonstrate lipid droplets (see Plate 9). At body temperature, the fat is liquid.

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