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The Granular Type II Pneumonocyte and Lung Antioxidant Defense

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Grant support: U.S. Public Health Service-National Institutes of Health grant 5PO1, ES00628, and 2 PO6 RR1069; and a grant from the Council for Tobacco Research-U.S.A.

University of California School of Medicine, Davis, California

Ann Intern Med. 1974;80(3):409-411. doi:10.7326/0003-4819-80-3-409
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Two cell types predominate in mammalian alveolar epithelium: [1] Type I cells (membranous pneumonocytes), which have a small, nucleated cell body with attenuated peripheral cytoplasm containing a relative paucity of intracytoplasmic organelles, and which cover most of the alveolar surface; and [2] Type II cells (granular pneumonocytes), which are nearly cuboidal with abundant cytoplasmic organelles, including moderate amounts of endoplasmic reticulum, ribosomes, and lamellar inclusions, and which cover areas of the alveolar surface not lined by type I cells. The lamellar inclusions of the type II cells represent sites of synthesis of pulmonary surfactant, the phospholipid-rich substance primarily responsible for


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