Thursday, November 24, 2011

Connective Tissues

Connective tissues consists of fiber proteins like collagen or elastin, glycoproteins, glycosamino-glycans, and tissue fluids. Connective tissues provide support, protection and stability, produce blood cells, and fill empty spaces. The cells are separated by extracellular matrix produced by themselves. There are five types of connective tissues: 1) Loose connective tissue, found around blood vessels, groups of muscle cells, etc., is well vascularized and flexible but not very resistant to stretch. 2) Dense connective tissue, which is found in ligaments and tendons and has many collagen fibers arranged in bundles; it is less flexible but much stronger than the first type. 3) Elastic connective tissue, found in ligaments and has more bundles of elastic fibers than collagen fibers. 4) Reticular connective tissue, which consists of reticular fibers produced by special cells, forming the supporting framework for bone marrow and lymphatic tissue. 5) carthilage, which is a connective tissue with a solid extracellular matrix, specialized to bear mechanical stress.