How Exactly Is Your Body Held Together?

Connective tissue does a lot more than just keep you in one piece. In this episode, Patrick breaks down the varied role it plays in your body and how one tissue type can encompass so many different types of cells.

Our bodies have four tissue types: nervous, muscle, epithelial, and connective. And while all play an important role in our bodies, in this Human we will be focusing specifically on connective tissue.

While, connective tissue does make sure your body doesn’t, well, fall apart, connective tissue wears many hats in our bodies. Connective tissue is difficult to define because it encompasses lots of different cell types, from cartilage in your nose and ears to the liquid blood in your veins.

Our connective tissue can take form as blood and lymph or as ligaments.

But there are some commonalities across all connective tissue, and that’s what Patrick is going to break down in this episode of Human.

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Connective Tissue Supports and Protects

“Connective tissues perform many functions in the body, but most importantly, they support and connect other tissues; from the connective tissue sheath that surrounds muscle cells, to the tendons that attach muscles to bones, and to the skeleton that supports the positions of the body.”

Tissue Engineering to Improve the Most Common Orthopaedic Surgery

“Torn menisci are so common and so severe that the surgery required to repair the injury is the most common orthopedic procedure, and cases are on the rise. However, meniscus surgery may not be fully effective, since it involves removing only the torn part of a meniscus, leaving behind less of it to bear the same load of body weight as before. Researchers at Penn are working to uncover ways to encourage the cells in and around the meniscus to repair themselves, hopefully leading to less invasive procedures.”

“Our bones, muscles and joints work together in a coordinated way to move our body and give it stability. Tendons and ligaments play an important role here, too: Tendons connect muscles to bones, allowing us to move, and ligaments help to hold things in place.”

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