Stratified squamous non-keratinized epithelium (40X)
The bar in the image shows you the thickness of the stratified squamous epithelium. The layers underneath it are composed mainly of connective tissue and muscle. At this magnification you can't see any of the individual cells, but you can look for a pattern in the nuclei of the cells in the epithelium. They are sort of difficult to see because the resolution of this image is not very good. Look for dark purple dots in the epithelial layer (the light purple dots are not nuclei--they are due to the low resolution). Notice that the nuclei are arranged in more than one layer. If you can't see the pattern on this image, don't worry. It would be more obvious under the microscope, and will be very easy to see on the next image.

Stratified squamous non-keratinized epithelium (100X)
Once again the bar shows you the thickness of the stratified squamous epithelium (sse). Just underneath it you can see a layer of connective tissue (ct). Look at the nuclei of the epithelial cells and notice that there are several layers of them. This is your clue that you are looking at a stratified tissue.

Stratified squamous non-keratinized epithelium (400X), surface
This image shows only the outermost layers of the stratified squamous epithelium. The cells in this tissue are not all squamous (flat). It is named for the shape of the cells on the surface of the tissue. The arrow indicates one of these squamous cells. Notice that two of the cells seem to be separating from the surface of the tissue. This is called sloughing (pronounced "sluffing") and is a normal process in epithelial tissues that form coverings and linings, especially the stratified tissues.

 Stratified squamous non-keratinized epithelium (400X), base

This image shows only the lower layers of the stratified squamous epithelium. The dotted line indicates the division between epithelium (above) and connective tissue (below).

The bottom layer is the source of new cells to replace the ones that are sloughing off of the surface. The cells in this layer are usually cuboidal or columnar in shape. As the cells are pushed up towards the surface, their shape changes. You can see that the cells are more flat in the upper part of the image. By the time they reach the surface, they will be squamous.

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