The Normal Structure of Bronchial Epithelium

  • Peter K. Jeffery
Part of the Ettore Majorana International Science Series book series (EMISS, volume 6)


The airways which supply the respiratory portion of the lung are responsible for the clearance of inhaled particulate and gaseous pollutants deposited on their mucosal lining. To this end, the lining mucosa produces a mucous secretion in which pollutants become dissolved or entangled, and which is then moved by cilia to the pharynx, where it is normally swallowed. The mucous secretion so-produced (normally between 10 and 100 ml/day) is a complex mixture of about 95% water and 5% carbohydrate, protein, lipid and inorganic material — usually in the form of a number of different glycoproteins, each differing in the ratio of its protein to carbohydrate component and its degree of acidification. The physical (i.e. viscoelastic) properties of the secretion are largely due to these glycoproteins which are produced by a variety of cell types comprising the airway wall.


Mast Cell Small Airway Ciliated Cell Bronchial Epithelium Clara Cell 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1982

Authors and Affiliations

  • Peter K. Jeffery
    • 1
  1. 1.Cardiothoracic InstituteBrompton HospitalLondonUK

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