Lobe (anatomy)
In anatomy
Anatomy is a branch of biology and medicine that is the consideration of the structure of living things. It is a general term that includes human anatomy, animal anatomy , and plant anatomy...

, a lobe is a clear anatomical division or extension that can be determined without the use of a microscope
A microscope is an instrument used to see objects that are too small for the naked eye. The science of investigating small objects using such an instrument is called microscopy...

 (at the gross anatomy
Gross anatomy
Gross anatomy is the study of anatomy at the macroscopic level. The term gross distinguishes it from other areas of anatomical study, including microscopic anatomy, which is studied on a microscopic scale, typically with a microscope....

 level.) This is in contrast to a lobule, which is a clear division only visible histologically
Histology is the study of the microscopic anatomy of cells and tissues of plants and animals. It is performed by examining cells and tissues commonly by sectioning and staining; followed by examination under a light microscope or electron microscope...


In practice, this division can be somewhat subjective. For example, it can be difficult to precisely distinguish between a interlobar duct
Interlobar duct
A interlobar duct is a gland duct which connects more than one anatomic lobe.Examples of where it can be found include the parotid gland and submandibular gland....

 and a interlobular duct
Interlobular duct
An Interlobular duct is a gland duct which connects more than one lobule. It is smaller than an interlobar duct.Examples of where it can be found include* pancreas* mammary gland* parotid gland...


Furthermore, the distinction is not universally accepted, and some sources simply consider a lobule to be a small lobe.

Examples of lobes/lobules

  • The four lobes of the human cerebral cortex
    Cerebral cortex
    The cerebral cortex is a sheet of neural tissue that is outermost to the cerebrum of the mammalian brain. It plays a key role in memory, attention, perceptual awareness, thought, language, and consciousness. It is constituted of up to six horizontal layers, each of which has a different...

    • the frontal lobe
      Frontal lobe
      The frontal lobe is an area in the brain of humans and other mammals, located at the front of each cerebral hemisphere and positioned anterior to the parietal lobe and superior and anterior to the temporal lobes...

    • the parietal lobe
      Parietal lobe
      The parietal lobe is a part of the Brain positioned above the occipital lobe and behind the frontal lobe.The parietal lobe integrates sensory information from different modalities, particularly determining spatial sense and navigation. For example, it comprises somatosensory cortex and the...

    • the occipital lobe
      Occipital lobe
      The occipital lobe is the visual processing center of the mammalian brain containing most of the anatomical region of the visual cortex. The primary visual cortex is Brodmann area 17, commonly called V1...

    • the temporal lobe
      Temporal lobe
      The temporal lobe is a region of the cerebral cortex that is located beneath the Sylvian fissure on both cerebral hemispheres of the mammalian brain....

  • The three lobes of the human cerebellum
    The cerebellum is a region of the brain that plays an important role in motor control. It may also be involved in some cognitive functions such as attention and language, and in regulating fear and pleasure responses, but its movement-related functions are the most solidly established...

    • the flocculonodular lobe
      Flocculonodular lobe
      The flocculonodular lobe is a lobe of the cerebellum consisting of the nodule and the flocculus.It is closely associated with the vestibulocerebellum. This lobe is involved in the maintenance of equilibrium.-External links:...

    • the anterior lobe
    • the posterior lobe
  • the earlobe
    The human earlobe is composed of tough areolar and adipose connective tissues, lacking the firmness and elasticity of the rest of the pinna. Since the earlobe does not contain cartilage it has a large blood supply and may help to warm the ears and maintain balance. However earlobes are not...

  • lobes of the lung
    The lung is the essential respiration organ in many air-breathing animals, including most tetrapods, a few fish and a few snails. In mammals and the more complex life forms, the two lungs are located near the backbone on either side of the heart...

    • Right lung
      Right lung
      The human right lung is divided into three lobes , superior, middle, and inferior, by two interlobular fissures:-Fissures:...

      : superior, middle, inferior
    • Left lung
      Left lung
      The human left lung is divided into two lobes, an upper and a lower, by the oblique fissure, which extends from the costal to the mediastinal surface of the lung both above and below the hilum....

      : superior and inferior
  • the liver
    The liver is a vital organ present in vertebrates and some other animals. It has a wide range of functions, including detoxification, protein synthesis, and production of biochemicals necessary for digestion...

    • Left lobe of liver
      Left lobe of liver
      The left lobe is smaller and more flattened than the right. It is situated in the epigastric and left hypochondriac regions. Its upper surface is slightly convex and is moulded on to the diaphragm; its under surface presents the gastric impression and omental tuberosity.-External links: - "The...

    • Right lobe of liver
      Right lobe of liver
      The right lobe is much larger than the left; the proportion between them being as six to one.It occupies the right hypochondrium, and is separated from the left lobe on its ventral surface by the falciform ligament; on its posterior surface by the ligamentum venosum for the cranial half, and by...

    • Quadrate lobe of liver
      Quadrate lobe of liver
      The quadrate lobe is an area of the liver situated on the under surface of the right lobe, bounded in front by the anterior margin of the liver; behind by the porta hepatis; on the right, by the fossa for the gall-bladder; and on the left, by the fossa for the umbilical vein.It is oblong in shape,...

    • Caudate lobe of liver
      Caudate lobe of liver
      The caudate lobe is situated upon the postero-superior surface of the liver on the right lobe of the liver, opposite the tenth and eleventh thoracic vertebrae...

    • Hepatic lobule
      Hepatic lobule
      A hepatic lobule is a small division of the liver defined at the histological scale. It should not be confused with the anatomic lobes of the liver , or any of the functional lobe classification systems....

  • the kidney
    The kidneys, organs with several functions, serve essential regulatory roles in most animals, including vertebrates and some invertebrates. They are essential in the urinary system and also serve homeostatic functions such as the regulation of electrolytes, maintenance of acid–base balance, and...

    • Renal lobe
      Renal lobe
      The renal lobe is a portion of a kidney consisting of a renal pyramid and the renal cortex above it. It is visible without a microscope, though it is easier to see in humans than in other animals....

       and cortical lobule
      Cortical lobule
      A cortical lobule is a part of a renal lobe. It consists of the nephrons grouped around a single medullary ray, and draining into a single collecting duct....

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