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Anatomy Atlases: Atlas of Microscopic Anatomy: Section 1 - Cells Atlas of Microscopic Anatomy: Section 10 - Digestive System

Plate 10.205 Mucosa

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

Surface view

Plate 10.205 Mucosa

Human, 10% formalin, A., B., C., carmine stain, D., unstained, 10 x.

Striking differences in the surface of the mucosa of the stomach, duodenum, colon, and gallbladder are illustrated in this plate.

The mucosal surface of the stomach contains numerous cylindrical openings, the gastric pits. The cells lining the gastric pits secrete their products into the lumina of the gastric pits and the secretions flow onto the surface of the mucosa. In contrast, the surface of the intestinal mucosa is thrown into folds (the plicae circularis), with fingerlike projections, the intestinal villi, which characterize the small intestine. The villi and mucosal folds markedly increase the surface area of the absorptive and secreting surfaces of the small intestine. The surface of the colon (large intestine) lacks villi and is pitted like the stomach. Tubular glands (crypts of Lieberkühn) extend from the surface through the thickness of the mucosae. The mucosal surface of the gallbladder is also thrown into numerous folds, giving it a honeycomb appearance. Cross sections of these same organs are seen in Plates 190, 192, 207, and 220.

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