False-colour SEM of goblet cell in small intestine

False-colour SEM of goblet cell in small intestine

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Credit: PROFESSORS P. MOTTA & A. FAMILIARI/UNIVER- SITY "LA SAPIENZA", ROME/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: False-colour scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of a goblet cell (at centre) with microvilli (tiny bumps), on a villus in the small intestine. As a site of mucous secretion and food absorption, the wall of the small intestine has folds (villi) to increase its surface area. Part of one villi can be seen. The goblet cell secretes mucous to protect this surface from digestive chemicals and assist food to pass over. Both the goblet cell and the epithelial cells which surround it have micro- villi, which further increase surface area, in order to absorb food passing through the small intestine. Magnification: x3600 at 6x7cm size. Magnification: x5,500 at 4x5 inch size.

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Keywords: anatomy, digestion, digestive system, false-coloured, goblet cell, gut, human body, intestine, microvilli, small, small intestine, villus

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