Histology Guide virtual histology laboratory

Chapter 14 - Gastrointestinal Tract

The gastrointestinal tract takes in food, digests and absorbs nutrients, and eliminates the remaining waste material. It is divided into four regions: the esophagus, stomach, small intestine and large intestine.

Fig 003 Gastrointestinal Tract


The stomach digests food by acidification and the breakdown of proteins. It is divided into three histological regions (cardiac, body/fundus and pyloric) on their anatomical location and appearance of their glands.

EM 031 Gastric Mucosa

Fundic Stomach

Gastric glands are found in the fundus/body of the stomach and produce stomach acid and secrete proteolytic enzymes.

EM 023 Gastric Glands

RD 101 Mucous Neck Cell

EM 025 Parietal Cell


EM 030 Parietal Cell


EM 035 Gastric Gland

EM 026 Chief Cell

EM 018 Gastric Gland

(enteroendocrine cell)

Pyloric Stomach

Pyloric glands are located in the antrum of the pyloris.

EM 032 Pyloric Mucosa

EM 062 Pyloric Glands

Gastroduodenal Junction

The gastroduodenal junction is the boundary between the stomach and the duodenum of the small intestine.

EM 033 Gastroduodenal Junction

Small Intestine

The small intestine is involved in the digestion of food and nutrient absorption. It is divided into the duodenum, jejunum and ileum.

EM 036 Small Intestine


EM 039 Small Intestine


EM 090 Small Intestine


EM 041 Small Intestine


EM 045 Small Intestine


EM 017 Small Intestine


EM 034 Small Intestine


EM 019 Small Intestine


EM 043 Intestinal Gland

(intestinal crypt or intestinal crypt of Lieberkühn)

EM 020 Paneth Cells

(intestinal crypt or intestinal crypt of Lieberkühn)

Gut-Associated Lymphoid Tissue (GALT)

Lymphoid nodules become increasingly numerous in the ileum and form bulges called Peyer’s patches. M cells in the epithelium overlaying Peyer’s patches and transport antigenic material to the underlying lymphocytes.

EM 223 Lymphoid Follicle

EM 056 M Cells

EM 054 M Cell

Ileocecal Junction

The ileocecal junction is the boundary between the small intestine and the large intestine.

EM 048 Ileocecal Junction

Large Intestine

The large intestine absorbs water and consolidates the fecal mass. It is divided into the cecum, appendix, colon, rectum and anal cannal.

EM 292 Appendix

EM 050 Colon

EM 021 Enteroendocrine Cell