Stratum lucidum

The stratum lucidum (Latin for "clear layer") is a thin, clear layer of dead skin cells in the epidermis named for its translucent appearance under a microscope. It is readily visible by light microscopy only in areas of thick skin, which are found on the palms of the hands and the soles of the feet.[1][2]

Histologic image showing a section of epidermis. Stratum lucidum labeled near center.
Section of epidermis

Located between the stratum granulosum and stratum corneum layers, it is composed of three to five layers of dead, flattened keratinocytes.[3][4] The keratinocytes of the stratum lucidum do not feature distinct boundaries and are filled with eleidin, an intermediate form of keratin. They are surrounded by an oily substance that is the result of the exocytosis of lamellar bodies accumulated while the keratinocytes are moving through the stratum spinosum and stratum granulosum.

The thickness of the stratum lucidum is controlled by the rate of mitosis (division) of the epidermal cells. Melanosomes in the stratum basale determine the darkness of the stratum lucidum.


  1. Acute and Chronic Wounds: Current Management Concepts. Mosby Elsevier. 2007. p. 41. ISBN 978-0-323-03074-8.
  2. Narayan, Roger (20 June 2009). Biomedical Materials. Springer Science & Business Media. p. 376. ISBN 978-0-387-84872-3.
  3. McGrath, J.A.; Eady, R.A.; Pope, F.M. (2004). Rook's Textbook of Dermatology (Seventh Edition). Blackwell Publishing. Pages 3.8. ISBN 978-0-632-06429-8.
  4. Tortora, Gerard; Derrickson, Bryan; Principles of Anatomy and Physiology (2009)152 John Wiley & Sons Inc, Hoboken, NJ ISBN 978-0-470-08471-7.
This article is issued from Wikipedia. The text is licensed under Creative Commons - Attribution - Sharealike. Additional terms may apply for the media files.