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Unformatted text preview: tissues can be distinguished based upon the type and function of the cells within the tissue and the unique characteristics of the extracellular matrix (ECM, ECF , ground substance , basement membrane , interstitial fluid ). Epithelial cells secrete a mixture of carbohydrates and proteins into the extracellular environment that becomes the basement membrane. This basement membrane serves as an attachment site for epithelial cells. Epithelial cells are generally closely packed together with little ECM between cells. In contrast, connective tissues are characterized by significant amounts of ground substance with lots of fibrous proteins and complex carbohydrates but relatively few cells. The texture of the ground substance can vary from liquid (as found in blood) to stony (as found in bone) depending upon the types and functions of the proteins and carbohydrates secreted by connective tissue cells....
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- Fall '10