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The page below is a sample from the LabCE course Histology Special Stains: Connective Tissue. Access the complete course and earn ASCLS P.A.C.E.-approved continuing education credits by subscribing online.

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Classifying Connective Tissue

Connective tissue is classified by cellular patterns and the composition of the matrix. There are 4 categories of connective tissue in adults:
  • Connective tissue proper - The matrix is composed of collagen, elastin, and reticulin fibers as well as adipose tissue.
  • Cartilage - The matrix is composed of firm, gel-like matrix is made up of water, collagen fibers and chondrocytes.
  • Osseous tissue (bone) - Bone is comprised of a rigid, mineralized matrix of collagen fibers and osteocytes.
  • Vascular tissue (blood) - The matrix is a liquid called plasma, which consists of red and white blood cells, leukocytes, and platelets.