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

Plate 10.207 Colon

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


Plate 10.207 Colon

Human, 10% formalin, H. & E., 162 x.


Columnar epithelium: Tall columnar epithelium lines the absorbing surface of the colon. Goblet cells are interspersed among the columnar absorbing cells. These columnar cells are primarily concerned with the absorption of water and possibly other substances (e.g., vitamins) from the colon.

Goblet cells: Interspersed among the superficial columnar cells. They are very numerous in the depth of the crypts. Produce the copious mucus needed in the colon to facilitate passage of dehydrated undigested materials through the digestive tract.

Lamina propria: Connective tissue (rich in plasma cells, lymphocytes, eosinophils, and other cells) located between glands.

Muscularis mucosae: Note the two layers of smooth muscle (inner circular and outer longitudinal).

Submucosa: Loose connective tissue stroma containing vessels and nerves.

Crypts of Lieberkühn: The name of the simple tubular glands opening into the intestine. They were described by Johann Lieberkühn in a memoir on the small intestine published at Leyden in 1745. Although named after him, they were first noted by Malpighi in 1688.

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