What is the difference between epithelial and connective tissues?
The primary animal tissues are epithelial, connective, muscle, and nervous tissue. These tissues have specialized cells and an extracellular matrix.
The main difference between epithelial and connective tissues is that the former is lines the cavity, surfaces of organs, and blood vessels whereas the latter supports, connects and separates different types of tissues and organs in the body.
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Comparison Table (Epithelial Tissues vs Connective Tissues)
|Basic Terms||Epithelial Tissues||Connective Tissues|
|Meaning||These are tissues that line the cavity and surfaces of organs and blood vessels throughout the animal body||These are tissues that support, connects, and separate different tissues and organs in the body|
|Organization of Cells||Cells are closely packed together||Cells are scattered throughout the extracellular matrix|
|Arrangement of Cells||Either in single or multiple layers||Spread throughout the tissue|
|Basement Membrane||Occur above the basement membrane||Occur below the basement membrane|
|Development||Develop from ectoderm, endoderm, and mesoderm.||Develop from mesoderm|
|Function||Serves as a barrier over microorganism and dehydration||Supports and connect organs and tissues|
|Blood Capillaries||No blood capillaries||Has blood capillaries for the absorption of nutrients|
|Location||Skin, glands, organs, mucous membranes, and organ system||Bones, ligaments, tendons, nerves, cartilage, and muscles|
|Innervation||Lack nerve supplies||Highly innervated excerpt cartilage|
|Nutrition||Obtain nutrients through diffusion||Blood capillaries supply nutrients to the tissues|
|Bound by||Through cell junctions like desmosomes and hemidesmosomes.||Connected by elastin and collagen fibers along with blood vessels.|
|Abundance||Less abundant||Plenty in number|
|Immune Function||Act as a protective barrier against microbes||Consists of mast cells and macrophages that destroy pathogenic microbes|
|Secretion||Secrete enzymes and hormones||No any secretion and does not get involved in metabolic activities|
|Loose connective tissue
Dense connective tissue
Liquid connective tissue
What Is an Epithelial Tissue?
Epithelial tissue is responsible for lining the organs, vessels, and cavities by forming a thin layer. The free surface is usually exposed to the air and fluids while the bottom is attached to the basement membrane.
Epithelial tissue act as a barrier to microorganisms. It also protects the skin from dehydration and damages. It takes part in secretion, absorption, and excretion.
Epithelial cells in the nose, ears, tongue, and skin have a sensory function. The epithelial cells in the respiratory and reproductive tracts are ciliated to propel substances like dust and female gametes.
Epithelial tissues are classified into squamous, columnar, and cuboidal. Squamous epithelial is flat tile-like. Columnar epithelial cells are shaped like bricks, and cuboidal is dice-like.
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What Is a Connective Tissue?
Connective tissues are responsible for supporting and connecting other organs and tissues. These tissues also provide metabolic support to the organs and tissues.
Connective tissues consist of cells and an extracellular matrix. The matric composes of proteins and glycoproteins which are attached below the basement membrane.
Connective tissues are classified into connective tissue proper and specialized connective tissue. The connective tissue proper is further divided into loose, irregular connective tissue and dense irregular connective tissue.
Examples of specialized connective tissues are cartilage, adipose tissue, hematopoietic tissue (bone marrow and lymphoid tissue), blood, and bone.
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Main Difference between Epithelial and Connective Tissue
- Epithelial tissue lines the cavity and surfaces of organs and blood vessels while connective tissue support connects and separates different types of tissues and organs.
- Epithelial tissue has closely packed together cells while connective tissues have scattered cells throughout the matrix.
- Epithelial cells are arranged in single layer or multilayers whereas connective cells spread throughout the tissue
- Epithelial tissue occurs above the basement membrane while connective tissue occurs below the basement membrane
- Connective tissue develops from mesoderm whereas epithelial tissue occurs from ectoderm, endoderm, and mesoderm.
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Both epithelial and connective tissues are major types of tissues in an animal body. These tissues normally conjugate each other during functioning in the body.
Epithelial tissue serves as a protective barrier against microorganisms whereas connective tissues support and connect other tissues and organs in the body.
The core difference between epithelial and connective tissue is their function in the body. Both have cells with unique arrangements.
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