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    Cellular Functions

    Keratinocytes : a keratin factory
    Melanocytes : a pigment factory
    Fibroblasts : a collagen and elastin factory
    [...]
    Keratinocytes : a keratin factory
    fonctions cellulaires vert

    In the deeper layers of the epidermis, this cell’s activity is concentrated on generating keratin, a fibrous protein which progressively fills the cell as it migrates towards the skin’s surface. Keratin is a water insoluble protein accounting for 95% of all proteins present in the epidermis and it is this substance that, in part, gives the skin its protective function.

    Melanocytes : a pigment factory
    fonctions cellulaires bleu

    Melanocytes are dendritic cells only found in the deepest layer of the epidermis. Their function is to produce melanin, the pigment which gives the skin its color, and to transfer it to the surrounding keratinocytes. Melanin absorbs light and protects skin cells from harmful UV rays.

    Fibroblasts : a collagen and elastin factory
    fonctions cellulaires multicolore

    Fibroblasts are the main cells in the dermis. They are located mostly in the dermal papillae close to the epidermis, and found on ly in very low numbers in the deep layers of the dermis. They are specialized in producing two types of protein fibres, collagen and elastin, that together form the fibrous network of the dermis. Collagen fibres, 70% of the proteins in the dermis, give the dermis its resistance to strain and traction, while elastin supplies its elastic properties.

    Adipocytes : energy storage compartments
    fonctions cellulaires rose

    Adipocytes function as reservoirs of fat, allowing the hypodermis to act as an energy reserve. The fats contained in the adipocytes can be put back into circulation, via the venous route, during intense effort or when there is a lack of energy in the body. Adipocytes also enable the hypodermis to participate in thermoregulation since fat is an excellent heat insulator.

    Langerhans cells: guardians of the skin
    fonctions cellulaires beige

    Langerhans cells are derived from bone marrows and found in the malpighian layer. The function of these cells is to detect foreign bodies (antigens) which have penetrated the epidermis, capturing intruders and then carriying them to the lymph nodes in the dermis. An immune response is then triggered, neutralizing and finally eliminating the antigen.

    Merkel cells : sensory receptors
    fonctions cellulaires mauve

    Situated between the keratinocytes in the renewal layer of the apidermis, merkel cells remain in contact with nerve endings. They can be isolated or grouped together in clusters called Merkel corpuscles. They serve as mechanoreceptors and are involved in the function of touch.