Tag : Cell of the month

Most of us will remember from high school biology class that kidneys comprise part of the excretory system and function in toxin removal, maintaining electrolyte homeostasis and regulating the body’s acid-base balance. Beyond this, proper kidney function is also critical for the secretion of several important hormones such as erythropoietin and renin, which regulate red blood cell production and arterial blood pressure, respectively. Given the complex roles of the kidney, it’s no surprise that its structure is just as complex with many different parts and cell types working together to carry out its functions.  (more…)

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Written on Jul, 30, 2018 by in , ,

Cell of The Month: Osteoblasts

Osteoblasts, often referred to as bone-forming cells, are specialized and terminally differentiated products of mesenchymal stem cells whose major function is to synthesize bone in a process known as osteogenesis.

Osteogenesis

During osteogenesis, osteoblasts are organized into closely packed sheets of connected cells on the bone surface, from which cellular processes may extend through the developing bone. Osteoblasts produce and release proteins, hormones, and other materials into their extracellular environment, where they assemble to form a thin layer (approximately 10 µm thick) of flexible bone tissue called an osteoid (also known as the un-mineralized bone matrix) on the surface of a newly developing bone or a bone that is undergoing repair.

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Written on Mar, 04, 2018 by in ,

Most of us were introduced to phagocytosis as a cellular event where dead host cells, microbial cells or their components, or other foreign bodies are engulfed and often destroyed by specialized cells known as phagocytes. During my undergraduate studies, phagocytosis was a small topic within immunology and macrophages were the crème de la crème of phagocytes, patrolling the body’s tissues for foreign invaders, much like security guards patrolling their territories.  (more…)

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