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Anatomy Atlases: Atlas of Microscopic Anatomy: Section 1 - Cells Atlas of Microscopic Anatomy: Section 13 - Female Reproductive System

Plate 13.260 Placenta

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


Plate 13.260 Placenta

A. Human, 10% formalin, H. & E., 89 x.
B. Human, Bouin's-Halmi's AFT, 107 x.


The maternal component of the placenta is shown in A; the endometrium of pregnancy is termed the decidua, and the stromal cells, which differentiate during pregnancy, are termed decidual cells. They are shown in profusion in B. Decidual cells are polygonal, possess a large, vesicular nucleus, and demonstrate the electron- microscopic characteristics of secretory cells; they are imputed to be the source of placental prolactin. Note the finger-like incursion of the maternal blood space into the substance of the decidua. This space is lined with trophoblastic epithelium (see Plate 259).

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