Dictionary of Human Evolution and Biology

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Smooth Muscle

Type of contractile tissue found in hollow organs such as bladders, blood vessels, and the gastrointestinal tract, as well as in a few other structures; histologically, a diagnostic characteristic of skeletal muscle is the lack of striations and fibers (cells) with a single nucleus. Smooth muscle is involuntary and is associated with autonomic activities involved with basic body maintenance.

Cf. cardiac muscle, skeletal muscle.

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