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Connective Tissue

Most abundant; binds, supports, & strengthens tissues; protects, insulates, & compartmentalizes structures; highly vasular (exc. cartilage & tendons); nerve supply (exc. cartilage)

What are the 2 basic elements of c-tissue?

Extracellular matrix & cells

Located between spaced cells of c-tissue; consists of protein fibers & ground substance; secreted by c-tissue

Extracellular matrix

What is extracellular matrix responsible for?

Unique properties of each type of c-tissue

Fluid, semifluid, gelatinous, or calcified; composed of H2O, proteins, & polysaccharides called glycosaminoglycans (GAG)

Ground substance

Example of glycosaminoglycans (GAG)?

Hyaluronic acid - viscous, slippery substance that binds cells, lubricates joints, & maintains shape of eyeballs

What are examples of sub. that produce hyaluronicdase?

White blood cells, sperm, & some bacteria

3 types of fibers of extracell. matrix

Collagen, elastic, & reticular


Strong & flexible protein, strongest when packed in tight, parallel bundles


Protein elastin & can stretch & recoil back into shape


Fine bundles of collagen coated w/ glycoprotein formed into branching networks (forms framework (stroma) into soft organs)

What do immature cell names end in?


What do mature cell names end in?


Examples of immature cells?

Fibroblast, chondroblast, oseoblast

Examples of mature cells?

Chondrocyte, osteocyte

List of cells present in c-tissue cells

Fibroblasts, macrophages, plasma, mast, adipose, WBC

Most numerous cells & secrete fibers & ground substance of matrix


Engulfs bacteria & cellular debris by phagocytosis


Secretes antibodies

Plasma cells

Produce histamine (helps reactions to injury/wounds)

Mast cells

Fat cells that store triglycerides (fats)


Immune system response



Present primarily in the embryo & fetus


Present after birth, 5 types of this

5 types of mature tissues

Loose, dense, cartilage, bone, & liquid

3 types of loose c-tissue

Areolar, adipose, & reticular

Areolar c-tissue (loose)

Consists of collagen, elastic, & reticular fibers & fibrblasts, macrophages, plasma cells, adipocytes, & mast cells; *functions in strength, elasticity, & support

Where is the areolar c-tissue located? (loose)

Located in subcutaneous layer deep to skin, superficial region of dermis, mucus membranes, & around blood vessels, nerves, & body organs

Adipose c-tissue (loose)

Consists of adipocytes where triglycerides are centrally located, & nucleus & cytoplasm are peripherally located; *functions in reduces heat loss, energy reserve, support, & protection

Where is the adipose c-tissue located? (loose)

Located in subcutaneous layer deep to skin, yellow bone marrow, padding around joints & behind eyeballs (eye sockets)

Reticular c-tissue (loose)

Consists of networking of interlacing reticular fibers & cells, *functions: forms stroma, filters & removes blood cells in spleen & microbes in lymph nodes

Where is the reticular c-tissue located? (loose)

Located in the stroma (supportive framework) of liver, spleen, & lymph nodes

Dense c-tissue

Has more fibers & less cells loose c-tissues; 3 types of this

3 types of dense c-tissue

Regular, irregular, elastic

Regular dense tissue

Parallel bundles of collagen fibers w/ fibroblast (tendons & ligaments); *function: provides strong attachment

Elastic dense tissue

Branching elastic fibers & fibroblasts for stretching & recoiling (lungs, bronchial tubes, ligaments); *function is to allow stretching of organs


Dense network of collagen fibers & elastic fibers embedded in chondroitin sulfate, strength due to collagen, resilience due to chondroitin sulfate

Chondrocytes (w/ cartilage)

mature cartilage cells in the lacunae (spaces) in extracell. matrix

3 types of cartilages

Hyaline, fibrocartilage, elastic cartilage

Hyaline (cartilage)

consists of chondrocytes & collagen fibers; located at ends of long bones, anterior ends of ribs, parts of nose, & fetal skeleton

Function of hyaline (cartilage)

Give support & shock absorption


Strongest type of cartilage, consists of chondrocytes scattered in bundles of collagen fibers

Where are fibrocartilage found?

Found in pubis symphysis, intervertebral discs, menisci of knees, & portions of tendons

Elastic cartilage

Highly felxible & resilient, chondrocytes scattered among elastic fibers

Where are elastic cartilage found?

Located on top of the larynx, part of the external ear, & auditory tubes

Functions of elastic cartilage?

Flexible support & maintains shape

Bone c-tissue (type)

AKA ossseous tissue, contains osteocytes that are located w/n lacunae in matrix; 2 classifications

2 classifications of bone c-tissue?

Spongy & compact

Spongy (extra. cell matrix - bone)

Matrix is arranged in lattice-like thin columns

Compact (extra. cell matrix - bone)

Matrix is arranged in concentric rings

Why is bone c-tissue hard? Due to?

Rigid & hard due to calcium & phosphate stores

What are the 2 types of liquid c-tissue?

Blood & lymph

Has a liquid matrix called blood plasma (RBC, WBC, & platelets)


Flows in lymphatic vessels & circulates body fluids, transports lipids, & helps protect against pathogens


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