Microscopic Anatomy

Microscopic anatomy (micro; small) is a branch of anatomy that relies on the use of microscopes to examine the smallest structures of the body; tissues, cells, and molecules. The extent to which microscopic anatomy can be examined is limited by the equipment available. Through a simple dissecting microscope, tissues can be viewed, organized and described. This is known as histology (his-TOL-o-je; the study of tissues). More powerful microscopes can examine smaller structures found within tissues, namely cells. Cytology (si-TOL-o-je; the study of cells) has been expanded to include the sub-cellular components of cells (known as organelles), and even the molecules that make up these organelles. Extremely powerful electron microscopes are required to see the structures at the molecular scale.

Portrait of Anna Antoinette Weber-van Bosse. Copyright holder: University of Amsterdam, Artis Library


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Advanced Anatomy 2nd. Ed. Copyright © 2018 by PHED 301 Students is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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