Mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue

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"MALT" redirects here. For germinated cereal grains, see Malt.

The mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue (MALT) (also called mucosa-associated lymphatic tissue) is a diffuse system of small concentrations of lymphoid tissue found in various sub-mucosa membrane sites of the body, such as the gastrointestinal tract, thyroid, breast, lung, salivary glands, eye, and skin. MALT is populated by lymphocytes such as T cells and B cells, as well as plasma cells and macrophages, each of which is well situated to encounter antigens passing through the mucosal epithelium. In the case of intestinal MALT, M cells are also present, which sample antigen from the lumen and deliver it to the lymphoid tissue.

Categorization[edit]

The components of MALT are sometimes subdivided into the following:

  • GALT (gut-associated lymphoid tissue. Peyer's patches are a component of GALT found in the lining of the small intestines.)
  • BALT (bronchus-associated lymphoid tissue)
  • NALT (nasal-associated lymphoid tissue)
  • CALT (conjunctival-associated lymphoid tissue)[1]
  • O-MALT (organized mucosa-associated lymphatic tissue); specifically, the tonsils of Waldeyer's tonsillar ring are O-MALT.[2]
  • D-MALT (diffuse mucosa-associated lymphatic tissue); MALT that is not organized as a separately macroscopically anatomically identifiable mass, tissue or organ (such as the aforementioned O-MALT) is diffuse MALT.[2]
  • LALT (larynx-associated lymphoid tissue)
  • SALT (skin-associated lymphoid tissue)

Role in disease[edit]

MALT plays a role in regulating mucosal immunity. It may be the site of lymphoma, usually non-Hodgkin lymphoma. A specific entity is the MALT lymphoma linked to Helicobacter pylori in the stomach.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Hong Liang, Christophe Baudouin, Antoine Labbe, Luisa Riancho & Françoise Brignole-Baudouin (2012). "Conjunctiva-associated lymphoid tissue (CALT) reactions to antiglaucoma prostaglandins with or without BAK-preservative in rabbit acute toxicity study". PLoS One. 7 (3): e33913. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0033913. PMC 3307783free to read. PMID 22442734. 
  2. ^ a b Gray's Anatomy, 38ed. p. 1442 ff.

External links[edit]