69853 - Veterinary Cytology, Histology and Embryology

Course Unit Page

  • Teacher Cristiano Bombardi

  • Learning modules Cristiano Bombardi (Modulo 1)
    Maurizio Mazzoni (Modulo 2)

  • Credits 4

  • SSD VET/01

  • Teaching Mode Traditional lectures (Modulo 1)
    Traditional lectures (Modulo 2)

  • Language Italian

  • Campus of Bologna

  • Degree Programme Single cycle degree programme (LMCU) in Veterinary Medicine (cod. 8617)

  • Course Timetable from Oct 11, 2022 to Jan 24, 2023

    Course Timetable from Oct 28, 2022 to Dec 16, 2022

Academic Year 2022/2023

Learning outcomes

At the end of the course the student knows the organization of the eukaryotic cell, the morphology and function of the cellular organelles, the organization of the tissues, the general embryology, the embryonic appendages in domestic animals. The student is able to recognize tissues in histological preparations.

Course contents

Biology of the cell: prokariotic and eukaryotic cells.

The molecules of the cell membrane, membrane asymmetry, topography and structure of membrane proteins. Membrane transports. Endocytosis and exocytosis.

Structure and functions of the nucleus: nuclear matrix, nuclear envelope, nuclear pore, lamins, nuclear export of proteins, nuclear protein import.

DNA in eukaryotic cells: structure and replication. Transcriptional regulatory mechanisms.

Structure and function of the nucleolus.

Endoplasmic reticulum (rough and smooth): ultrastructure and functions. Golgi apparatus: compartmental organization, function, biogenesis of lysosomes, constitutive secretion, and regulate secretion.

Mitochondria: structure and functions. Microbodies: structure and biology of oxigen radicals. Centrioles: structure and functions.

Lysosomes: structure and endosome-lysosome interaction. Microtubules: structure, function, dynein, kinesin, and intracellular transport. Filaments: actin and intermediate filaments. Glycogen, lipid, and endogenous pigment inclusions.

Simple epithelium: simple columnar epithelium, simple cuboidal epithelium, simple squamous epithelium.

Stratified epithelium: Stratified squamous nonkeratinizing epithelium, Stratified squamous keratinizing epithelium, Stratified columnar epithelium, Stratified cuboidal epithelium.

Pseudostratified epithelium. Surface modifications (microvilli, glycocalix, cilia, stereocilia); cellular attachments..

General classification of the glands: Exocrine and Endocrine glands. Exocrine glands: unicellular (goblet cells) and Multicellular glands.

Exocrine glands: tubular glands, acinar glands and alveolar glands. Merocrine secretion, Apocrine secretion, and Holocrine secretion.

Histological Structure of Large Exocrine Glands: parenchyma, capsule and septa.

Endocrine glands: morphological characteristics and classification

General features of the connective tissue: cells and intercellular matrix

Connective tissue: cells and matrix (collagen, reticular, and elastic fibers). Gelatinous connective tissue. Loose connective tissue: fibroblast, plasma cells, neutrophils, macrophages, fat cells, mast cells, chromatophores, and matrix.

Reticular tissue: cells and matrix. Dense connective tissue (dense irregular connective tissue, dense regular connective tissue): cells and matrix. Elastic tissue: cells and matrix.

White adipose tissue, brown adipose tissue: histological features, histogenesis and functions.

Hyaline cartilage: chondroblast, chondrocyte, lacuna, isogenous group, matrix, and perichondrium. Elastic cartilage: chondroblast, chondrocyte, matrix. Fibrocartilage: chondroblast, chondrocyte, matrix. Process of chondrogenesis. Cartilage nutrition.

Compact and cancellous bone, periosteum, endosteum, osteon, canaliculus, lacunae, osteocyte, Haversian systems/canals and Volkmann’s canals, osteoblasts, osteocytes, osteoclasts.

Intramembranous bone formation: role of the osteoblasts, osteocytes and osteoclasts in the process of intramembranous bone formation and conversion of cancellous bone to compact bone. Peri-Endochondral bone formation: formation of a bony collar, chondrocyte death, invasion of an osteogenic bud from the periosteum. Increasing of the diameter of a long bone. Elongation of a long bone: epiphyseal growth mechanism, zones of a cartilage growth plate and processes of osteogenesis that take place in each zone (zone of resting cartilage, proliferation, hypertrophy, calcification and ossification).

Cytology of skeletal muscle fiber: shape, sarcolemma, structure of the sarcomere.

Myofibrils and triads. Contraction. Perimuscular Connective Tissue: Endomysium, Perimysium, and Epimysium.

Cardiac muscle cells: shape, sarcolemma, structure of the sarcomere, myofibrils, and intercalated discs. Smooth muscle cells: shape, sarcolemma, myofibrils, functional activity and gap juctions.

Structural organization and functional morphology of the neuron. Types of neurons. Direction of the information flow. Mechanisms of fast and slow axonal transport. Glial cells: cytology, morphology, classifications, functional properties. Gray matter and white matter. Ganglia.

Guaine di

Chemical and electrical synapses: ultrastructural features and functions. Basic organization of neuromuscular junctions. Neurotransmitters. Myelin: structure and functions. Process of myelination. Peripheral nerves: structure and functions. Receptors.

Introduction. Erythrocytes: morphology and functions.

Morphology and functions of: Neutrophil, Eosinophil, Basophil Lymphocyte, Monocyte. Thrombocyte and Megakaryocytes. Hematopoiesis.

The early development of the Mammal: fertilization, cleavage. Types of placenta.

Blastocyst, gastrulation, implantation.

The notochord. The neuronal tube Flexion and torsion. The axial, intermediate and lateral mesoderm.

Development of foetal membranes.

Chorion, amnion, yolk sac, and allantois

Types of placenta.


Istologia di Valerio Monesi, 7 edizione. Piccin

Biologia-Citologia Medica (Maraldi, Tacchetti). edi-ermes.

Istologia Medica (Maraldi, Tacchetti). edi-ermes.

H. Dieter-Dellmann, Jo Ann C. Eurell, Istologia e Anatomia Microscopica Veterinaria (V edizione, traduzione italiana a cura di R. Bortolami e M. L. Lucchi. Casa Editrice Ambrosiana).

Titolo: Istologia Curato da: Rosati P., Colombo R., Maraldi N. Editore: Edi. Ermes Edizione: 5.

Pelagalli - Castaldo - Lucini - Patruno - Scocco EMBRIOLOGIA. Morfogenesi e anomalie dello sviluppo. Idelson-Gnocchi, 2008.

Teaching methods

The course consists of theoretical and practical lessons (optical microscope). Students with special needs are sent to contact the teacher via email in order to better organize the teaching activity and the execution of the exams.

Assessment methods

Recognition of a histological preparation under the microscope and three oral questions on topics of Cytology, Histology and Embryology.

Teaching tools

PowerPoint. Light microscope. The frontal lessons are supported by projection of images of the tissues. The practical lesson take place in a room equipped with n° 40 microscopes.The studentshave the opportunity to observe a collection of 200 histological preparations (slides), differently stained, concerning all the type of tissue. Each slide is supplied with a legend that gives information about the organ from which the tissue was removed, the organization and the structure of the tissue and on the stain of the sections. The practical lessons are supervised by the teacher of the course.

Office hours

See the website of Cristiano Bombardi

See the website of Maurizio Mazzoni