Parenchyma: Definition, Function, Types and Involvement in the Carcinogenic Process

It is defined or used as an implemented term to describe the functional tissues of every living being or that contains cells on the planet.

The word “parenchyma” comes from a Greek word for “pour” or “fill”, which represents the idea that the parenchymal cells that are most of the functional tissues in plants, animals and humans.

In addition, this tissue is functional because it performs tasks such as photosynthesis in plants or the storage of information in the human brain, as opposed to “structural” tissues such as wood in plants or bone in animals and people.

In humans, the parenchyma is much more varied. It refers to the cells that perform the biological function of the organ , such as the lung cells that perform the gas exchange, the liver cells that cleanse the blood or the brain cells that perform the functions of the brain for their good performance.

The parenchyma in the tissues of the kidney performs the function of filtering the blood that passes through them, excluding only the protective membranes and the vessels that transport fluids, because they serve to direct the blood and urine inside and outside the kidney when the process ends. depuration.

Involvement in the carcinogenic process

Another definition of parenchyma occurs in the development of cancer and other abnormal growths in the human organism or body, such as malignant or benign tumors.

In conclusion, when talking about parenchyma in the carcinogenic process, is defined as the co-author of the pathological tissue that produces growth, so it is able to expand and reproduce without limitations, which deteriorates in this case the health of the affected if not This anomaly is detected in time.

Parenchyma function

Because “parenchyma” is a generic term for all cells that perform non-structural biological functions, the actions of parenchymal cells are many, such as:

In plants, parenchymal cells with thin cell walls and the ability to reproduce fulfill functions that include:

  • Photosynthesis.
  • The exchange of gases.
  • Storage of food
  • Repair of wounds.
  • Secretion of sap.

In animals, “parenchymal” cells refer to the functional cells in each organ. That means that almost all functions performed in the body of an animal are performed by parenchymal cells.

Some of these functions that can be listed are, for example:

  • Nervous system: parenchyma in the nervous system helps with what would be the perception, the thread of thoughts, the storage and processing of information received daily, among others.
  • Breathing system: in the breathing process it helps the lungs with the exchange of gases.
  • Lymphatic system: the parenchyma’s function is the production of immune cells in the lymphatic system.
  • Secretion of hormones: they allow the pancreas, the various reproductive organs, the brain, the adrenal glands, among others, to secrete the hormones necessary for the proper functioning of the organism.
  • Blood filtering: this occurs in the functioning of the kidneys.
  • Decompose toxins: the parenchyma intervenes in the liver process when it breaks down toxins from the body.


There are different types of parenchyma, both for plants and for animal and human organs. In the case of people, the following can be listed:

Organ parenchyma

In people, the cells that perform the primary function of the organ of the “structural” cells serve primarily to protect or shape the parenchyma.

That is why practically all the functions that are carried out inside the body of an individual, except the structural and protective functions, are performed by parenchymal cells .

The hard, calcified cells in the bones and the protective membranes around most organs are referred to as the “structural” cells.

Tumor parenchyma

When talking about cancer or other abnormal growths in the body, the term “functional” is also useful to analyze the parenchyma.

The parenchyma of a tumor or other growth is considered the “neoplastic” part that is capable of dividing the cells that form or compose said mutant anomaly.

What it means or allows the parenchyma to serve the pathological “function” that generates the propagation and prolonged growth of the tumors that the cancer generates without distinction of zones or organs in the affected body.