Caption: Adenoid / Nasopharynx surface. Seen here are: a ciliated nasal epithelial cell surrounded by other squamous nasal epithelial cells. The nasopharynx (nasal part of the pharynx) lies behind the nose and above the level of the soft palate. Ciliated nasal epithelial cells occur throughout the nasal lining (one is seen in this image). They have hair-like structures known as cilia. Coordinated, wave-like beating of the cilia propels the mucus to the back of the pharynx, where it is swallowed, thus removing foreign debris. Interdispersed amongst the cilia are microvilli. Stratified squamous nasal epithelial cells line the surface of the nasopharynx and surround the ciliated nasal epithelial cell. The epithelial cell surfaces are covered with tiny microvilli that increase the cell surface area. The microvilli likey aid in localization of foreign debris (coming from the nose) and detection by immune cells. Mucus, secreted by cells in the epithelial lining (not seen), traps foreign objects, such as bacteria, preventing them from entering the lungs. Other sensory cells / features (not seen) also occur in the nasal epithelial layer.
Magnification*: x2,000
Type: SEM
Copyright 2007 Dennis Kunkel Microscopy, Inc.
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