News tagged with mucus

New immune system discovered

(Medical Xpress)—A research team, led by Jeremy Barr, a biology post-doctoral fellow, unveils a new immune system that protects humans and animals from infection.

May 20, 2013
popularity 4.9 / 5 (36) | comments 9 | with audio podcast

Gut microbe battles obesity

(Medical Xpress)—Akkermansia muciniphila is one of the many microbes that live in our intestines. This bacterium, which feeds on the intestine's mucus lining, comprises between 3 and 5 percent of the gut microbes of hea ...

May 14, 2013
popularity 4.8 / 5 (11) | comments 0 | with audio podcast report

The nose's unheralded neighbor

Pity the poor maxillary sinuses. Those bulbous pouches on either side of the human nose are known more for trapping mucus and causing sinus infections than anything else. They were thought to be an evolutionary ...

Mar 12, 2013
popularity 5 / 5 (3) | comments 0

Mucus

In vertebrates, mucus (adjectival form: "mucous") is a slippery secretion produced by, and covering, mucous membranes. Mucous fluid is typically produced from mucous cells found in mucous glands. Mucous cells secrete products that are rich in glycoproteins and water. Mucous fluid may also originate from mixed glands, which contain both serous and mucous cells. It is a viscous colloid containing antiseptic enzymes (such as lysozyme), immunoglobulins, inorganic salts, proteins such as lactoferrin, and glycoproteins known as mucins that are produced by goblet cells in the mucous membranes and submucosal glands. This mucus serves to protect epithelial cells in the respiratory, gastrointestinal, urogenital, visual, and auditory systems in mammals; the epidermis in amphibians; and the gills in fish. A major function of this mucus is to protect against infectious agents such as fungi, bacteria and viruses. The average human body produces about a litre of mucus per day.

Bony fish, hagfish, snails, slugs, and some other invertebrates also produce external mucus. In addition to serving a protective function against infectious agents, such mucus provides protection against toxins produced by predators, can facilitate movement and may play a role in communication.

This text uses material from Wikipedia licensed under CC BY-SA