Sebaceous Gland Lipids

  • Mary Ellen Stewart


Sebaceous glands are small, uniquely mammalian, cutaneous organs located throughout the dermis of hairy skin and of certain mucocutaneous epithelia (Montagna and Parakkal 1974). Generally, they are attached by a duct to a hair follicle, through which they discharge their lipid secretion, called sebum, to the skin surface. The significance of sebum to the animals that produce it is not completely clear. Sebum may help some animals to stay warm and dry by providing a water-repellent lipid coating for the fur. Sebaceous lipids may also serve as olfactory signals in some species. In humans, it is doubtful that sebum has any useful function (Kligman 1963).


Sebaceous Gland Skin Surface Lipid Sebum Secretion Human Sebum Human Sebaceous Gland 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mary Ellen Stewart
    • 1
  1. 1.Marshall Dermatology Research Laboratories, Department of DermatologyUniversity of Iowa, College of MedicineUSA

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