File:Blood-thymus barrier EM01.jpg

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Blood-Thymus Barrier - Electron micrograph

This election micrograph from the mouse thymus shows the blood-thymus barrier.

Capillary lumen -> endothelial cell -> reticular cell

Capillary of the mouse thymus cortex. X 27,000.

In this specimen care has been taken to retain the blood in the vascular bed during fixation. The capillary, lumen is wide open and contains both plasma and red blood cells; in the cytoplasm of the attenuated endothelial cells (End), plasmalemmal vesicles are few in numbers.

The vessel is enclosed in a coaxial canal formed by the surrounding thymic parenchymal cells; a macrophage containing residual bodies (asterisks) encompasses most of the circumference of the vessel and sends processes into the vascular adventitia (Adv).

Below and on the left, the parenchymal front bounding the vascular adventia is represented by a process of a reticular cell.


Raviola E & Karnovsky MJ. (1972). Evidence for a blood-thymus barrier using electron-opaque tracers. J. Exp. Med. , 136, 466-98. PMID: 4115129

Fig. 2. modified in size, contract and labelling.


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Cite this page: Hill, M.A. (2024, May 29) Embryology Blood-thymus barrier EM01.jpg. Retrieved from

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© Dr Mark Hill 2024, UNSW Embryology ISBN: 978 0 7334 2609 4 - UNSW CRICOS Provider Code No. 00098G

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current13:54, 10 May 2018Thumbnail for version as of 13:54, 10 May 20181,280 × 1,747 (375 KB)Z8600021 (talk | contribs)
13:54, 10 May 2018Thumbnail for version as of 13:54, 10 May 20181,640 × 2,613 (478 KB)Z8600021 (talk | contribs){{#pmid:4115129}}