How can we help?

You can also find more resources in our Help Center.

Simple Epithelial Tissues

STUDY
PLAY
Simple Cuboidial Epithelium
Simple Cuboidial Epithelium
Description: Single layer of cubelike cells with large, spherical nuclei.

Function: Secretion and Absorption.

Location: Kidney tubules; ducts and secretory portions of small glands; ovary surface.
Simple Columnar Epithelium
Simple Squamous Epithelium
Description: Single layer of flattened cells with disc-shaped central nuclei and sparse cytoplasm: the simplest form of Epithelia.

Function: Allows passage of materials by DIFFUSION and FILTRATION in sites where protection is not important; secretes lubricating substances in serosae.

Kidney, air sacs of lungs, lining of heart, blood vessels; lining of ventral body cavity (serosae).
Stratified Squamous Epithelium
DESCRIPTION: Thick membrane composed of several cell layers; basal cells are cuboidal or columnar. Surface cells are flattened/squamous.

KERATINIZED TYPE surface cells are full of keratin and dead: basal cells are active in mitosis.

FUNCTION: Protects underlying tissues in areas subject to abrasion.

LOCATION:
NONKERATINIZED TYPE form the moist linings of the esophagus, mouth and vagina.

KERATINIZED forms the epidermis of the skin, a DRY membrane.
Transitional Epithelium
DESCRIPTION: Resembles both stratified squamous AND stratified cuboidal; basal cells cuboidal or columnar; surface cells DOME SHAPED or squamous (depending on degree of organ stretch, like full bladder).

FUNCTION: Stretches readily and permits distension of urinary organ by contained urine.

LOCATION: Lines ureters, bladder and part of urethra.
Pseudostratified Columnar Epithelium
DESCRIPTION: Single layer of cells of differing heights, some not reaching the free surface; nuclei seen at different levels. May contain goblet cells and cilia.

FUNCTION: Secretion of mucus, propulsion of mucus bu cilia.

LOCATION: Non-ciliated type in male's sperm carrying ducts. Ciliated types lines trachea and most of upper respiratory tract.

Flickr Creative Commons Images

Some images used in this set are licensed under the Creative Commons through Flickr.com.
Click to see the original works with their full license.