noun, plural: connective tissue cells
Any of the cellular elements in the connective tissue
The connective tissue is one of the major types of animal tissues. Its major functions are to connect, support, and surround tissues and organs. As for its composition, it is predominantly composed of extracellular components. These extracellular components include fibers (e.g. collagen fibers, elastic fibers, and reticular fibers) and intercellular substances. Some connective tissues are not fibrous. Examples of non-fibrous connective tissues are adipose tissues and blood. Thus, the cellular elements vary from one connective tissue type to another.
The connective tissue cells may be in the form of fibroblasts, adipocytes, and blood cells (such as macrophages, mast cells, etc.).
The fibroblasts are cells of connective tissue that produces and secretes fibers (e.g. collagens, reticular and elastic fibers). They are also responsible for the production of certain ground substances in connective tissues. The adipocytes are connective tissue cells that are specialised in storing fat (lipid). Other functions of adipocytes are for cushioning, thermal insulation, and hormone production (e.g. leptin). Blood cells are the cellular elements of blood. They include the leukocytes (white blood cells) and the erythrocytes (red blood cells).