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Bone tissue

Learning objectives

After completing this study unit you will be able to:

  1. Name the components of bone tissue.
  2. Describe the structure of long bones.
  3. Explain the different types of bones.

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Bone tissue consists of various cell types such as osteoblasts, osteocytes and osteoclasts, as well as a mineralized extracellular matrix. Osteoblasts deposit bone material (protein fibers) into the bone matrix, the osteocytes are the bone cells that lie in the lacunae of the bone matrix and osteoclasts can dissolve and break down the mineralized bone matrix again.

Flat bones, like those of the cranium, consist of a layer of spongy bone, covered on either side by a layer of compact bone. Long bones are made mostly of compact bone, with lesser amounts of spongy bone and bone marrow.

Every time bone is formed, woven bones are formed first, in which collagen fibrils and bone cells are still irregularly arranged. Mature bones are called lamellar bones, where osteons form the functional units and collagen fibrils are arranged in an organized manner in the lamellar system.

Watch the following video to learn more about the characteristics and histological appearance of bone tissue:

Browse atlas

Ready to review all the structures in further detail? Interested to know the differences between compact and spongy bone? Browse our atlas and image galleries below.

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