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Types and Function of Connective Tissue

Connective Tissue

The human body has a wide range of movement. Much of this movement result from the skeletal system and the muscular system working together. Strong connective tissue called tendons attaches muscles to bone and ligaments attach bone to bone. However, there are several other functions of connective tissue.

Encloses and separates organs. 
Loose connective tissue is found around veins, arteries, and organs.
Stores nutrients 
Bones are made of connective tissue and store important nutrients like calcium
Attach muscle to bones and bones to each other.
Tendons and ligaments are made of dense connective tissue and attach muscle to bone and bone to bone.
Transports key nutrients
Blood is made of connective tissue and transport key nutrients around your body.
Stores energy
Adipose connective tissue stores energy


There are Three Key Parts of Connective Tissue: Ground substance, Fibers, Cells
The ground substance consists of large molecules which are abbreviated (GAGs) which link together to form even larger molecules. The GAG stands for Glycosaminoglycans, however, 90% of ground substance is made up of water and fills the spaces between fibers and the cells.
In bones the ground substance also includes minerals.
In blood, the ground substance is plasma

Fibers of connective tissue provide strength, elasticity and support The principal fiber type is collagen. Connective tissue also contains elastic fibers.

Connective tissues contain cells. However, the connective tissue is not directly attached to one another as you would find in epithelial cells.

The fibers and ground substance combined is called the matrix

Cells of connective tissue end with the following suffixes 

Blasts: to produce matrix
Cyte: to maintain the matrix
Clast: to destroy the matrix

For example Fibroblast, Fibrocyte, Fibroclast, Osteocyte, Osteoblasts

types connective tissue
3 major types Connective tissue 
Proper, Supporting Connective Tissue, Fluid Connective Tissue


Connective tissue Proper
There are two kinds of Connective Tissue Proper, loose and dense.

Loose connective tissue functions to support and hold tissues and organs in place.
They are found around organs and is also the fat layer between skin and muscle. This tissue is found under all epithelia, the outer coverings of blood vessels, nerves, the esophagus, and other organs.

Dense connective tissues is ligaments and tendons. Ligaments attach bone to bone and tendons attach muscle to bone.

Supporting Connective Tissue 
Bones and cartilage are both types of supporting connective tissue.
Cartilage provides strength with flexibility while resisting wear. It cushions and shock absorb where bones meet bone. It is found at the end of bones, the nose, and ears.

Bones are composed of connective tissue and have many functions.
They provide framework and strength for the body.
Bones create movement when working with muscles.
Bones store calcium.
Bones create blood cells and white blood cells.

Fluid Connective Tissue
Your blood is considered connective tissue.
Blood transports oxygen, carbon dioxide, and nutrients around the body, and contains white blood cells.

Lymph is a clear fluid that contains white blood cells and is also connective tissue.