Cheek and inner lip cells

At about 60 microns in size, human cheek cells are larger than most other animal cells (which are typically 10-30 microns). They are also easily found, by gently chewing the inside of your cheek and scraping out the surface with a spoon or a finger.

These are some images of Hardi’s cheek cells, first without stain and second stained with methylene blue.

Cheek cells – without stain
Cheek cells – with stain

The dots in the cells may be organelles, or bacteria. We wondered if the larger cylindrical bodies inside the cells (labelled ‘?’) might be mitochondria.

For comparison with cheek cells Hardi thought to sample the cells from her lower inner lip. She took 4-5 samples of each kind.

Cells of inner lip – with stain
Cells of inner lip – with stain (2)
Cheek cell – with stain

In all the samples the cheek cells looked larger than the inner lip cells and they also had a more prominent nuclei. Anyone else like to try this?

Hardi Parmar (Hardi on Microcosmos)
Jayashree Ramadas





One Comment Add yours

  1. laksiyer says:

    Beautiful presentation. You can see bacteria if you use side illumination or dark field.

Leave a Reply