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Epithelial Tissues Lab
Introduction
Epithelia are tissues consisting of closely
packed cells without intervening intercellular
substances. Epithelia are avascular, but all
epithelia "grow" on an underlying layer of
vascular connective tissue. The connective
tissue and the epithelium are separated by a
basement membrane. Epithelium covers all
free surfaces of the body including all body
cavities and internal and external surfaces of
organs.
Classification
Epithelia are classified on the basis of the
number of cell layers and the shape of the
cells in the surface layer.
Layers
• If there is only one layer of cells in the epithelium, it is designated simple.
• If there are two or more layers of cells, it is termed stratified.
Height/Shape
• If surface cells are…
o flat and scale-like they are termed squamous (scale- or plate-like).
o boxy they are termed cuboidal.
o tall and rectangular they are termed columnar.

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Variations
Pseudostratified epithelia appears to be layered (stratified) because the cell nuclei occur in two
or more levels in a row of aligned cells.

Transitional epithelia expands easily due to the rounded cells in the surface layers.

View Slides
Go to the blog and locate the Epithelial Tissue Web Lab. Use the links to complete the lab
assignment.
Type of Tissue

Function

Simple Squamous

Diffusion and Filtration

Simple Cuboidal

Secretion and Absorption

Simple Columnar

Absorption

Stratified Squamous

Protects underlying cells

Keratinized Stratified
Squamous

Protects underlying cells

Stratified Cuboidal (rare)

Protection

Stratified Columnar (rare)

Protection and Secretion

Pseudostratified Columnar
Transitional

Removing dust and particles
from airways (cilia)
Specialized to become
distended.

Location
Lungs, walls of capillaries and
vessels
Glands, kidney tubules,
ovaries
Lines the uterus and most
organs of the digestive tract
Lines the throat, vagina,
mouth
Lines skin, tough upper layers
are filled with keratin
Lines ducts of mammary
glands, sweat glands,
pancreas
Lines male urethra and vas
deferens, parts of the pharynx
Lines the respiratory
passageways
Urinary tract

***Once you are comfortable with the types of epithelia, move onto the QUIZ. You can find the
links in the blog. You may use your notes and drawings on the quiz.

Name _____________________________________ Date _______________ Block ____________

Epithelial Tissues Web Lab
1. Epithelia are classified by the number of cell layers and the ____________________ of the
cells.
2. Distinguish between simple and stratified.
3. Describe the 3 main shapes of epithelial cells

4. Scientific Drawings
• Use separate unlined paper and staple to this one
• Draw the diagrams as realistically as possible using colored Label each drawing with
the type of tissue, its location and function
• Remember to identify any important structures (nuclei, cilia..etc) on your drawings

Quiz

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