Physiology of thymus

Functionally, the lymphocytes are the only important cellular components of the thymus and they are involved in cell mediated immunity. The thymus is a primarily a lymphoid organ just as the bone marrow. T cells which have developed sensitization against body protein are eliminated while those that have developed sensitization against foreign proteins are released into circulation where they populate the secondary lymphoid organs such as the spleen and lymph nodes, as large immunologically competent T lymphocytes.

The thymus has now been documented to be an endocrine organ and it is said to be responsible for the sensitization of special lymphocytes during embryological development for the function of cell mediated immunity or delayed hypersensitivity reaction.

Thymic hormones.

  1. Thymosin A1 B1, B4, B4; 2, Thymopoietin I,II,3, Thymic humoral factor , 4, Facteur thymique serique, 5, Thymostimulin, thymulin.

The sensitization and proliferation of lymphocytes in the thymus are under the influence of thymic hormones listed above.


Cross section of thymus; low power

 

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