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Small intestine lining. Coloured scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of a section through the mucosa (lining) of a small intestine. Villi (brown, across top) project into the intestine lumen (cavity), greatly increasing the surface area for the absorption of nutrients from food. Below the villi is the submucosa (grey). This tissue contains capillary blood vessels (red, for example at upper right), which transport absorbed nutrients to a nearby vein. The submucosa also contains lymph vessels and fat cells (not seen). Beneath the submucosa is the muscularis mucosae (red, bottom), a layer of muscle tissue. Magnification: x24 at 6x7cm size.
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