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Histology of Salivary

What is a gland?

Gland is an organ of
secretion made up of
specialized secretory
cells derived from the
surface epithelium on
which it opens.
General Features
Epithelial in origin
Present as discrete organs or
in layers.
Secretory cells form
functional units called
secretory end pieces- may be
flask (Acinus)or cylindrical
Types of Secretory units
General Features
Fluid secreted may be enzymes,
hormones or mucus.
Secretion is modulated by
nervous and hormonal
Myoepithelial cells- star shaped,
contractile, lie between the
secretory cells and the basement
Mixed Salivary Gland
Develop as invagination of the
epithelium into the underlying
vascular connective tissue.
Distal part forms glandular or
Secretory end Piece functionally
an active portion.
Proximal part-Excretory Duct-
opens on the surface of the
Some cells get detached from the
Development of Gland
Glandular Epithelium
Classification of Glands
Based on the site of Secretion
Exocrine Gland
Endocrine Gland
Paracrine Gland- secretes its
products into the local
extracellular space affecting the
surrounding cells e.g.
enteroendocrine cells of
gastrointestinal tract (GIT)
Classification of Glands
Based on the Number of cells
Unicellular Gland- goblet cells in
the respiratory and intestinal
Multicellular Gland- all glands
other than goblet cells
Classification of Glands
Based on the Number of Ducts
and the shape of secretory end
Simple Gland- one duct
Compound Gland- has minor and
major ducts
Both the types are further
subdivided into
Tubulo, Alveolar/Acinar or
Multicellular Glands
Compound Tubulo-alveolar
Compound Tubulo-alveolar
Compound Glands
Simple Alveolar-Penile urethra
Simple Branched alveolar-Sebaceous gland
Compound Alveolar- Pancreas, Parotid, Mammary
gland and glands of Respiratory tract.
Simple Tubular-Crypts of Leiberkuhn
Simple branched tubular-Uterine glands,Pyloric
and fundic glands
Compound Tubular-Brunners Gland, Cardiac
Simple coiled tubular-Sweat gland
Compound Tubulo-alveolar- Submandibular &
Sublingual salivary glands
Mixed Salivary Gland
Classification of Glands
Based on the Mode of Secretion
Merocrine Gland- No loss of Cytoplasm-e.g.
most of the compound glands e.g. Pancreas
Also known as Eccrine or Epicrine
Apocrine Gland- Partial loss of cytoplasm-
e.g. lactating mammary gland, sweat
glands in the axilla and external genitalia
Holocrine Gland- Complete loss of
cytoplasm e.g. sebaceous and tarsal gland
Cytocrine Gland- Cells are released as
secretion. e.g. Testis (spermatozoa)
Modes of Secretion
Classification of Glands
Based on the Nature of
Serous Gland- thin, watery secretion rich
in enzymes e.g. Parotid gland
Mucous Gland- thick, viscous secretion
for protection and lubrication. e.g.
Sublingual salivary gland
Mixed Gland (seromucous)- both watery
and viscous material.e.g. Submandibular
salivary gland
Difference between Serous &
Mucous Acini
Thin, watery
Thick, viscous
Proteinaceous secretion
Zymogen granules in
cyto Mucigen droplets
Central rounded Nucleus Nucleus-flat &
Small Lumen peripheral
Indistinct cell bondaries Large Lumen
Darkly stained Distinct cell boundaries
Enzymatic action Lighly stained
Parotid Gland Protection & lubrication
Sublingual gland
Mixed salivary gland
Serous Acini

Mucous Acini

Seromucous Acini- having Serous

General Architecture of a
Compound Gland
Gland may be divided into lobes and lobules.
Secretory end pieces- Acini/tubules
Ducts- Intralobular, interlobular, main
excretory duct
Septa (interlobular, interlobar)
Loose intralobular connective tissue
supporting the parenchyma
ADENOMA: Benign tumors arising
in the gland
growth in the gland
Parotid Gland
Parotid Gland
Intra-glandular adipose tissue in parotid gland
Submandibular Gland
Submandibular Gland
Mixed Salivary Gland
Mucous Acini
Sublingual-purely mucous
Minor salivary glands of Palate
Aggregations of
Mucous acini
No striated duct
Minor salivary glands of Palate(High
Mucous acini with
central Lumen
Large Pyramidal
cells with granular
Nucleus towards
the basement
The minor salivary glands are small aggregates of
unencapsulated mucous or serous glands. In the
tongue they are in intimate contact with the striated
muscle tissue.
Keratin cocktail stains intercalated, striated and
interlobular ducts, but acinar and myoepithelial cells
are mostly negative.
The serous gland can be identified by
the presence of serous acinus with
A) Small Lumen
B)Large Lumen
C)Flat peripheral Nuclei
D)Mucigen droplets
When there is a complete loss of
cytoplasm resulting in cell death of
the secretory cell during the process
of secretion, the gland is said to be
A) Merocrine
B) Apocrine
C) Holocrine
D) Cytocrine
Sebaceous gland is an example of
Holocrine gland
Apocrine gland
Merocrine gland
Unicellular gland
Mucous Acinus
A) Secretes thin watery fluid
B) Has flat, peripheral nucleus
C) Has a small lumen
D) Contains zymogen granules
Sweat glands in the axilla are an
example of
A) Merocrine gland
B) Apocrine gland
C) Holocrine gland
D) Cytocrine gland