Physiology of GALT

They are present scattered all over the gut called solitary lymphatic follicles but a larger aggregates of more than 100 follicles are present in the small intestine called Peyer's patches. They lie on the antimesenteric border of the intestine and are 2-10 cm long. They are covered by specialized cells called follicle associated epithelial (FAE) cells or M -cell which are thought to ingest antigens and present to lymphoid tissues thereby stimulating immune response for production of antibodies against these antigens.

B lymphocytes are in large number in these GALT but whether they are stimulated to perform their function as occurs for T cells by thymus is yet to be decided. The B cells in the gut become plasma cells and produce antibodies in the gut and a special type of immunoglobulin A called secretory IgA, which fights off foreign bodies and pathogens before they enter the blood stream from the gut.

Tonsils are part of gut and may be divided into

  • Palatine tonsil

  • Pharyngeal tonsil

  • Lingual tonsil

Function of MALT- Histophysiology

GALT functions as police system by which foreign bodies and pathogenetic organisms are welcomed to the gut and examined in order to produce the appropriate response to them either via humoral or cell mediated immunity. Hence they run the entire length of the gut beginning from the mouth to the the anus in order to perform this singular function.

Other MALT tissues perform similar function; for respiratory tract we have BALT.














Hypothesized blockade of appendix  







Gross anatomy

Organ integration




Chemical Pathology

Anatomical Pathology




Electronic School of Medicine
Creator: Oluwole Ogunranti