By: Michael McDaniel, Latoya Gates, Cristy Barfield, and Danielle Chapelle
During this experiment we planned to compare and contrast human cheek cells of a variety of age groups, different stages of skin, and difference in species. We wanted to see if age could correlate to cell structure and size, if animal and human cells differed and if epidermal and cheek cells could differ in shape, size, and color. The age groups that we planned to study were adolescent, young adult, and adult for both human and animal. The animals that we studies were in the canine and lizard class. The collection of these cells played a vital role in our experiment. We documented who or what gave us the sample, the location of the sample, and the condition of the area. We prepared wet mount slides to examine the samples using the light microscope. Doing this experiment we compared and contrasted the samples. Finding that the age does play a huge role in the appearance of the cell. We found that the epidermal and the cheek cells do differ in the shape and scar tissue and healthy tissue also differ.
In the human body, the skin is the largest organ. As well as being the biggest organ in the body, the skin is one of the most important, not only to humans, but to all organisms that have it. Most skin cells are similar, whether they come from a different part of the body or a completely different animal. This can be observed by comparing several different specimens, varying the type of subject, location, health and age of the sample. The skin structure of humans, dogs and lizards is all similar. According to the wiseGEEK, Dog Owner’s Guide and UV Guide UK articles, they all have three layers made of epithelial cells: the outer layer called the epidermis, the layer under that called the dermis, as well as a layer under that called the subcutaneous layer. With humans, the epidermis is the body’s first level of defense against the outer environment (Brannon 1). It consists of seven layers: stratum basale, stratum spinosum, stratum granulosum, stratum licidum, and stratum corneum (1). It is also where the skin pigment is produced (1). The dermis is where the hair follicles are found, as well as the sweat glands (2). Blood vessels and nerves are plentiful in this layer, allowing the sensation of pain, temperature, touch and pressure (2). The subcutaneous layer is full of fat and connective tissue important to the regulation of the temperature of the skin and body, as well as acting as a shock absorber (3). Larger blood vessels and nerves are present in this level (3). In dogs, the epidermis is made of four layers: stratum corneum, stratum granulosum, stratum spinosum and basal cell layer (Ahlers 1). Included in the canine epidermis are the hair follicles as well as sweat and oil glands (2). The dermis is mainly loosely molded connective tissue, as well as blood vessels, nerves, lymph nodes, other glands and muscles (2) Below that, the subcutaneous acts as it does in humans (2). With lizards, the epidermis is made of seven layers: stratum germinativum, clear layer, lacunar layer, alpha layer, mesos layer, beta layer and Oberhautchen layer (“The Transmission of Ultraviolet Light through Reptile Skin Shed.” 2). While humans and dogs are constantly shedding dead skin cells, reptiles are unique in that they grow a new skin under the old and shed the whole, older skin, mostly at once (3). Once again, the subcutaneous layer acts the same (3). Even though the cheek cell is also a type of skin cell, it is different from the outer skin structure (“Human Cheek Epithelial Cells” 1). Where the skin structure is made up of several layers, the cheek is primarily made up of one (1). The cheek cell structure is called the basal mucosa and is made of squamous epithelial cells (1). These cells divide almost every twenty-four hours, are constantly being shed...