You are on page 1of 8

Tissues

Every organism, whether its body is unicellular or multi cellular, is capable of performing
all vital functions such as respiration, ingestion, excretion and reproduction. In multi
cellular organisms, because of the increase in body size, it is difficult for each cell to
efficiently cope with the vast variety of the physiological needs of the organism. So cells
group together to perform definite functions.
A group of cells of the same type or of a mixed type having a common origin and
performing similar functions are called tissues.
Classification of Plant Tissues
The plant body is made up of different kinds of tissues. Classification of tissues is
presented in this schema.
Protective Tissues
Protective tissues are usually present in the outermost layer of the plant body
such as leaves, stem and roots.
It is one cell thick and covered with cutin and protects the underlying tissues
present in the plant body.
As roots and stems grow older with time, tissues at the periphery become cork
cells.

Cork cells are dead, have no intercellular spaces and the cell walls are heavily
thickened by the deposition of suberin.

They prevent loss of water.


Meristematic Tissues (Meristems)
Nature
Meristematic tissues are composed of cells that divide continuously.
The cells are spherical, oval, polygonal or rectangular
The cell wall is thin and made up of cellulose.
The cells are closely arranged without inter-cellular spaces
Cytoplasm is abundant and nuclei are large
Vacuoles are absent and if present, very few
Occurrence
Found in growing tips of root and shoot
Found in the vascular cambium of dicot trees just beneath the bark. They are
responsible for the increase in diameter of the stem.
Function
The main function of meristematic tissue is to continuously form a number of new
cells and help in growth.
Permanent Tissues
Permanent tissues are derived from meristematic tissues.
They have lost the power of dividing, having attained their definite form and size.

In their earlier stages the cells are more or less similar in structure but slowly
they become specialized and form permanent tissues.

They can be classified into simple and complex tissues.


Simple Tissues
A simple tissue is made up of one type of cells forming a uniform mass.
There are three types of simple tissues:
Parenchyma
Collenchyma

Sclerenchyma
Parenchyma
Nature
Cells are isodiametric i.e. equally expanded on all sides

They may be oval, round, polygonal or elongated


Nucleus is present and hence living
The cell walls are thin and made of cellulose
Cytoplasm is dense with a single large vacuole
Intercellular spaces may be present
May contain chlorophyll. Parenchyma which contain chlorophyll are called
chlorenchyma.
Occurrence
Found in the cortex of root, ground tissue in stems and mesophyll of leaves.
Function
Store and assimilate food

Give mechanical strength by maintaining turgidity

Prepare food if chlorophyll is present

Store waste products like tannin, gum, crystals and resins


Collenchyma
Nature
The cells are elongated and are circular, oval or polygonal in cross-section
Cell wall is unevenly thickened with cellulose at the corners against the
intercellular spaces

Nucleus is present and hence the tissue is living


Vacuoles are small

Intercellular spaces are generally absent

If they contain chlorophyll they are known as chlorenchyma


Occurrence
Found under the skin i.e. below the epidermis in dicot stems.
Function
Provide mechanical support to the stem
Being extensible, these cells readily adapt themselves to the rapid elongation of
the stem
Sclerenchyma
Nature
The cells are long, narrow, thick and lignified, usually pointed at both ends
The cell wall is evenly thickened with lignin and sometimes is so thick that the
cell cavity or lumen is absent
Nucleus is absent and hence the tissue is made up of dead cells

They have simple, often oblique pits in the walls

The middle lamella i.e. the wall between adjacent cells is conspicuous
Occurrence
Found abundantly in stems of plants like hemp, jute and coconut, their length
varying from 1 mm to 550 mm.
Function
Gives mechanical support to the plant by giving rigidity, flexibility and elasticity
to the plant body.
Sclereids
These are special sclerenchymatous cells found in the cortex, pith, phloem, hard
seeds, nuts and stony fruits.
The flesh of pear and guava are sometimes gritty due to the presence of
sclereids.

These cells are thick walled, hard and strongly lignified.

They are isodiametric, polyhedral, slightly elongated or irregular in shape.

Their function is to give firmness and hardness to the part concerned.


Complex Tissues
Complex tissues are made up of more than one type of cells and they work
together as a unit.
They transport water, salt and prepared food material to various parts of the plant
body.
Complex tissues are of two types:
Xylem

Phloem (bast)
Xylem and phloem are also called vascular tissues and together they constitute the
vascular bundles.
Xylem
Xylem or wood is a conducting tissue and is composed of elements of different
kinds. They are:
Tracheids
Vessels or tracheae
Xylem parenchyma
Xylem sclerenchyma
Nature
Tracheids
These are elongated cells with sloping walls enclosing a large empty cavity.

Cell walls are thickened with lignin.


The cells are dead.
Vessels or Trachea
These are cylindrical tube-like structures formed by a row of cells placed end to
end.
The transverse walls between the cells are almost dissolved forming a continuous
channel or water-pipe.

The cells are dead.


Xylem Parenchyma
These are made up of parenchymatous cells.

They are thin walled and are living.


Xylem Sclerenchyma
These are sclerenchymatous cells and form the wood in older plants.

The cells are dead.


Occurrence
Found in the root, stem and leaves.
They occur along with phloem to form the vascular bundle.
Function
Conduct water and minerals upwards from the roots to the stem and leaves
Cells that are lignified to give mechanical strength to the plant
Phloem (Bast)
Phloem or bast is also a conducting tissue and is composed of elements of different
kinds.
Nature
Sieve Tubes
The cell walls are thin and the cells elongated, placed end-to-end forming a
slender tubular structure.
Transverse walls are perforated forming a sieve plate.

Cytoplasm of one sieve element is continuous with those of the sieve elements
above and below by cytoplasmic connections passing through the pores of the
sieve plate.
Companion Cells
Associated with the sieve tube is a small cell containing dense cytoplasm and a
large elongated nucleus.
Phloem Parenchyma
These are ordinary parenchymatous cells and are living. They are absent in
monocot stems.
Bast Fibres
These are sclerenchymatous cells. The cells are dead.
Occurrence
Phloem is found in all parts of the plantlike roots, stem and leaves.

They occur together with the xylem to form the vascular bundle.
Function
The function of the phloem is to conduct prepared food from the leaves to the
growing parts of the plant and the storage organs.
In a nutshell Xylem and Phloem can be summarized like this:
Animal Tissues
In higher animals including man, cells are organized into four types of tissues.
They are:
These are further differentiated as shown in the chart below:
Epithelial Tissue
Nature, Occurrence and Function
Depending upon the shape and function, epithelial tissues are classified into
different types.
Squamous Epithelium
Here the cells are compact, plate-like with no inter-cellular spaces.

It forms the outer layer of the skin and lines cavities and ducts.
Its function is to protect underlying parts from germs and injury.
Cuboidal Epithelium
These consist of cube-like cells, which are square in section but the free surface
appears hexagonal.

Found in kidney tubules and in glands.

These tissues provide mechanical strength to the part where they occur and
produce secretions.
Columnar Epithelium
These consist of cells that are tall and pillar-like.
They form the lining of the stomach and intestine.
They are also present in the salivary glands, sweat glands and tear glands.
These cells give mechanical strength and some that line the intestine adsorb
digested food material.
Ciliated Epithelium
These are cuboidal or columnar cells, the free surface, of which bear cilia capable
of beating rhythmically.
These cells are found lining the trachea or wind-pipe of vertebrates.

The beating cilia help to keep unwanted particles from entering the lungs.
Glandular Epithelium
This is actually a modification of the columnar epithelium in which the cells have
become specialized for the manufacture and secretion of chemical substances.
These cells are found lining the intestine and various glands.

They secrete mucus and other secretions.


Connective Tissue
Nature, Occurrence and Function
Tissues and organs in a body must be supported and held in position.
This function is performed by connective tissue, which binds organs and tissues
together.
They are of four types.
Areolar Tissue
This consists of tendons and ligaments.
Tendons are strong inelastic and connect muscles to bones.
Ligaments are elastic and connect bones to each other.
This tissue has a matrix in which are scattered special cells and fibres which may
be yellow or white.
The special cells can engulf bacteria and prevent infection.
Adipose Tissue
These are fat cells.
They are oval or rounded cells filled with fat droplets.
This tissue is found below the skin and in the bone marrow.

The function of this tissue is to store fat and conserve body heat.
Skeletal Tissue
This is a connective tissue in which the ground substance or matrix is composed
of elastin, which is impregnated with salts of calcium and magnesium.
Skeletal tissue is of two kinds, bone and cartilage.
Cartilage is softer than bone and does not contain the organic salts.

Instead they have special cells, which gives strength to the tissue.

Cartilage is found in joints and in the discs between vertebrae.


This tissue gives support and flexibility to body part.
Fluid Tissue
Blood
This consists of a fluid called plasma, which has red blood corpuscles (RBC),
white blood corpuscles (WBC) and blood platelets.
Blood circulates throughout the body in blood vessels.
The blood transports oxygen, nutrients, hormones to tissues and organs.
Lymph
This is a straw coloured fluid similar to blood but does not have RBCs.
Lymph flows in special vessels called lymph vessels.
Its function is to form a defence system for the body.
Muscular Tissue
Nature, Occurrence and Function
Muscles of the body are made up of elongated muscle cells also known as muscle
fibre.
The movement of the body is brought about by the contraction and relaxation of
contractile protein present in muscle cells.
There are three types of muscle fibres.
Striated Muscle
These are striped muscles and are voluntary since their contraction is under the
control of the will.
The entire muscle fibre shows alternate dark and light patches.

They are long, cylindrical, unbranched cells, with a number of nuclei situated
towards the periphery of the muscle fibre.

These muscle fibres are found in the muscles of the limbs, body wall, face, neck
etc.

The function of these muscles is to provide locomotion and all other voluntary
movements to the body.
Unstriated Muscle Fibre
These are smooth, involuntary muscles.

Each muscle fibre is a long, narrow, spindle shaped tapering cell.


The cell is uninucleate.
Delicate threads called myofibrils run longitudinally through the cell.
These muscles are found in the walls of the alimentary canal, and internal
organs.
Unstriated muscles cause slow and prolonged contractions, which are involuntary
i.e. not under the control of the will.
In the alimentary canal they cause movement of the food and in the blood
vessels they help the blood to flow.
Cardiac Muscle
Cardiac muscles are extensively present in the heart.
They show characteristics of both striated and unstriated muscles.
They are composed of non-tapering cells with faint cross-striations.

Each cell contains one or two nuclei.


The cells are cylindrical and branched.
The function of the cardiac muscle is to rhythmically contract and relax
throughout life without fatigue and to pump the blood and distribute it to the
various parts of the body.
Nervous Tissue
Nature, Occurrence and Function
The brain, spinal cord and nerves are all composed of nervous tissue.

Each nerve cell is called a neuron.


These are highly specialized cells.
They have the ability to receive stimulus from within or outside and send
impulses to different parts of the body.

Each cell consists of three parts, the cyton or the cell body, the dendrons which
are short processes arising from the cyton and further branch into thin dendrites
and the axon which is a single long cylindrical process forming fine branches
terminally.

Dendrites receive impulses and the axon takes impulses away from the cell body.
Question
Question (2): Tissue A is usually present in the outermost layer of the plant body.
Identify A and give one function it performs.
Answer: Tissue A is the protective tissue.
Function - Protects the inner tissues present in the cell.
Question (7): Give two characteristic features of cork.
Answer: The two characteristic features of cork are:
It is a good insulator
It is a good shock absorber
Question (10): Give two examples of tissue that is used for binding, supporting and
packing together different organs of the body.
Answer: The tissue being referred to is the connective tissue.
e.g., Cartilage and bone
Question (11): What is blood? What type of tissue is it?

Answer: Blood is a connective tissue in which cells move in a fluid matrix called blood
plasma.
Question (13): Give similarities between parenchyma and collenchyma.
Answer: Similarities:
They are thin walled
Both of them are living cells
Both are circular, oval or polygonal
Both manufacture starch when they contain chloroplasts
Question (15): Give two similarities between sclerenchyma and collenchyma.
Answer: Similarities:
They provide mechanical support and elasticity.
They do not have intracellular spaces.
Question (16): Give the importance of epithelial tissues.
Answer:
They help in the elimination of waste products and secretion.
They help in absorption of water and other nutrients.
They form the inner lining of the mouth and alimentary canal.
They protect the underlying cells from drying, injury and infection.
Question (17): Give two important characteristics of ligaments.
Answer: Ligaments have to be strong and elastic as they connect one bone to another.
Question (18): Which cell or tissue is responsible for feelings such as heat, pain etc.?
Answer: Nervous tissues are responsible for conducting impulses or signals and hence,
are responsible for feelings such as pain, heat etc.
Question (19): Give one difference between ligament and tendon.
Answer: Tendons connect the bone to the muscles, whereas, ligaments connect one
bone to another.
Question (20): Give one difference between bone and cartilage.
Answer: Bones are very strong and non-flexible whereas cartilage is a little more
flexible.
Question (21): What is a tissue?
Answer: Groups of cells having a common origin and performing similar functions are
called tissues.
Question (22): How are plant tissues broadly classified?
Answer: Plant tissues are broadly classified into:
Meristematic tissues
Permanent tissues
Question (23): Where do you find meristematic tissues in plants?
Answer: Meristematic tissues are present only at the growing regions like shoot tip, root
tip and cambium.
Question (24): What is the main function of the meristematic tissue?
Answer: The main function of the meristematic tissue is to continuously form a number
of new cells.
Question (25): Give the classification of permanent tissues.
Answer: Permanent tissues are classified as follows:
Question (27): What is cork? What are its functions?
Answer: Cork is a dead tissue present in plants. Inter-cellular spaces are absent in cork.
Cork is protective in function. It also prevents loss of water.
Question (28):Mention four functions of the epithelial tissues.
Answer: The main functions of epithelial tissues are:
They form the outer layer of skin and protect the underlying cells from drying,
injury, bacterial and chemical effects.

They form the inner protective lining for external organs like mouth and
alimentary canal.
They help in absorption of water and nutrients.
They help in elimination of waste products.
Question (30): What is the main function of the cardiac muscles?
Answer: Contraction and relaxation of the cardiac muscles help to pump and circulate
blood to various parts of the body.
Question (33): What is the nerve cell called as? What is its function?
Answer: The nerve cell is called as neuron.
Neuron receives stimuli from within or outside the body and conducts impulses to
different parts of the body.