Elaunin (Greek verb ἐλαύνω "I steer") is a component of elastic fibers formed from a deposition of elastin between oxytalan fibers. It is found in the periodontal ligament and in the connective tissue of the dermis, particularly in association with sweat glands.[1]


“The elastic system of normal human skin was studied by light and electron microscopy. By light microscopy three different types of fibers were observed: oxytalan, elaunin, and elastic. The most superficial ones (oxytalan fibers) are very thin and directed perpendicularly to the dermoepidermal junction. They start from a plexus with the tinctorial characteristics of elaunin fibers which is connected with the thicker elastic fibers of the reticular dermis. At the electron microscopic level the oxytalan fibers are formed by bundles of tubular microfibrils 10 to 12 nm in diameter. In the deepest layers of the dermis an amorphous material is seen in the core of these bundles. In the elaunin fibers the amorphous material is sparse, while in the elastic fibers it is abundant and compact."[2]


Unlike Oxytalan fibres, elaunin fibres stain with orcein, aldehyde fuchsin and resorcin fuchsin without prior oxidation.

Research Findings

Elaunin fibers have been found within the secretory coil of human eccrine sweat glands. They were in found in bundles of microtubules which had a different constancy than elastic fibers. The elaunin fibers found in the secretory coil had a less thicker appearance than that of elastic fibers.[3]

Elaunin can be identified where the fibers of gingival ligament.

There are elastic fibers and one of the main type of elastic fiber is elaunin

In the papillary dermis elaunin is lost when in reduction.

See also


  1. ^ Guyton, A.C. & Hall, J.E. (2006) Textbook of Medical Physiology (11th ed.) Philadelphia: Elsevier Saunder ISBN 0-7216-0240-1
  2. ^ Cotta-Pereira G, Guerra Rodrigo F, Bittencourt-Sampaio S (1976): Oxytalan, elaunin, and elastic fibers in the human skin. J Invest Dermatol., 66 3): 143-1488.
  3. ^ Cotta-Pereira, G.; Rodrigo, F.Guerra; Bittencourt-Sampaio, S. (December 1975). "Ultrastructural study of elaunin fibres in the secretory coil of human eccrine sweat glands". British Journal of Dermatology. 93 (6): 623–629. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2133.1975.tb05111.x. ISSN 0007-0963.