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The mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue (MALT) (also called mucosa-associated lymphatic tissue) is the diffusion system of small concentrations of lymphoid tissue found in various sites of the body, such as the gastrointestinal tract, thyroid, breast, lung, salivary glands, eye, and skin.
MALT is populated by lymphocytes such as T cells and B cells, as well as plasma cells and macrophages, each of which is well situated to encounter antigens passing through the mucosal epithelium. In the case of intestinal MALT, M cells are also present, which sample antigen from the lumen and deliver it to the lymphoid tissue.
The components of MALT are sometimes subdivided into the following:
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