Epithelium grown in culture can be identified by examining its morphological characteristics. Epithelial cells tend to cluster together, and have a "characteristic tight pavementlike appearance". But this is not always the case, such as when the cells are derived from a tumor. In these cases, it is often necessary to use certain biochemical markers to make a positive identification. The intermediate filament proteins in the cytokeratin group are almost exclusively found in epithelial cells, and so are often used for this purpose.<ref>Freshney, 2002: p. 9</ref>
The slide shows at (1) an epithelial cell infected by Chlamydia pneumonia; their inclusion bodies shown at (3); an uninfected cell shown at (2) and (4) showing difference between infected cell nucleus and uninfected cell nucleus.
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