PROFESSORS P.M. MOTTA, A. MAGGIONI, C. CAGGIATI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY PROFESSORS P.M. MOTTA, A. MAGGIONI, C. CAGGIATI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Pericyte. Coloured scanning electron micrograph showing a pericyte (yellow) attached to a capillary (blue). Pericytes are flat, contractile connective tissue cells found around the capillary walls. They are formed by a cell body (centre) from which branch thinner processes embracing the capillary wall. Their function is to squeeze the capillaries in order to increase the flow of blood. Capillaries average 0.008mm in diameter; they connect the ends of the smallest arteries (arterioles) with the beginnings of the smallest veins (venules). Magnification: x4640 at 6x7cm size.
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