Dense Irregular Connective Tissue

Key:

  1. Collagen fibers cut longitudinally (along the length of the fiber)
  2. Collagen fibers cut transversely (across the width – indicating fibers are oriented in different directions)

Description:

  • Here, the collagen fibers are irregularly arranged instead of being arranged in parallel bundles.
  • There are a few elastin fibers to give the tissue some resiliency.
  • The main cell type for this tissue is the fibroblast (which ‘builds’ the fibers)

Function:

  • Able to withstand tension applied from many different directions.
  • Helps to provide structural strength.
  • Also helps to prevent over-expansion of organs.

Location:

  • Dermis of skin
  • Submucosa (a middle layer) of digestive tract
  • Fibrous capsules of organs and joints
  • Nerve and muscle sheaths