epidermal cell

Prickle cell

A prickle cell is an epidermal cell which lies above the basal cell layer, constituting a stratum spinosum, which forms innumerable intercellular bridges. These intercellular bridges give the stratum spinosum a rough appearance to which the cells of which it is composed owe their name. The purpose of these cells is to generate keratin. Prickle cells belong to the family of keratinocytes and contain large numbers of desmosomes.


  • Bruce Albert, et al. "Molecular Biology of the Cell." (2002). 4th edition: Garland Science. In Chapter 22, Section "Epidermal Cells Form a Multilayered Waterproof Barrier," no page number available. Online from NCBI

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