Tuesday, August 17, 2010



Lunula (from the Latin lunule, meaning little moon)

Thumb nail, showing the lunula
Lunula is the white crescent shaped area at the base of the human finger or toe nail. Lunula is most obvious in the thumb, though not everyone's lunula is clearly visible. A lack of visible lunula is sometimes associated with certain pathologic conditions as in Terry's nails, where the nails appear white with a characteristic ground glass appearance and no lunula. This condition, thought to be due to decreased vascularity with increased connective tissue in the nail bed, is frequently found in hepatic failure, cirrhosis, diabetes, congestive heart failure, hyperthyroidism, and malnutrition.


Desmosome (from the Greek desmo & soma, "fiber body")

Desmosomes are a special type of cell junction connecting adjacent cells together. Also known as macula adherens ("adhering spot"), desmosomes are a type of junctional complexes found in epithelial and muscle cells. They are made up of molecular complexes that attach cell adhesion proteins to intracellular keratin cytoskeletal filaments. Certain blistering diseases of the skin such as Pemphigus vulgaris are a result of genetic defects that result in abnormal desmosomal proteins, and hence defective cell-to-cell junctions.

Monday, August 16, 2010



Crenation (from the Latin crenatus, scalloped or notched)

Crenated RBCs
The phenomenon of shrinking of cells when placed in a hypertonic environment (a hypertonic solution is one in which the concentration of solute is greater than that of the cells), as a result of osmosis (the diffusion of water across a semi-permeable membrane from a region of higher concentration to a region of lower concentration until dynamic equilibrium has been reached. Crenation is particularly noticable in red blood cells, which become scalloped and notched when placed in a hypertonic solution, losing their usual biconcae shape, and takng the appearance of a spiked ball, from which they take the name of echinocytes or burr cells.

Sunday, June 27, 2010


A Word On What It's All About

Asclepion Lexicographies are collected notes about interesting medical words and terminologies I may encounter when pouring through the pages and tomes of many voluminous medical texts.

Words are interesting. Words are fun. Words are worth remembering. And therefore scribbled down for the immemorial scrolls of time and age.