Author(s): Riva A, Tandler B, Testa Riva F
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Abstract That part of the human sublingual gland that corresponds in morphology to the conventional description of this organ presented in most histology texts (probably the major sublingual gland, in contradistinction to the aggregated small glands that compose the minor sublingual glands) was studied by electron microscopy. The gland is mixed, with slightly more mucous elements than seromucous ones. The mucous cells are arranged in tubules that usually are capped by seromucous demilunes. Seromucous cells also form occasional acini or may be scattered in the walls of the mucous tubules. The appearance of the mucous cells varies with the stage of the secretory cycle that they may be in. Their secretory droplets increase in number and progressively compress cytoplasmic organelles. Filamentous bodies also may be present. Based on secretory-granule substructure, four different kinds of seromucous cells can be recognized; these may be a morphological expression of asynchronous synthesis of different secretory proteins. The duct system is an abbreviated one compared to the other major salivary glands. The first duct segments, into which the mucous tubules drain, are similar to intercalated ducts. Larger ducts contain mitochondria-rich cells but lack the basal striations that characterize striated ducts. The paucity of typical striated ducts may be correlated with the elaboration of sodium-rich saliva by the human sublingual gland.
This article was published in Am J Anat
and referenced in Journal of Addiction Research & Therapy