Exocrine secretion
Merocrine or eccrine – by exocytosis
Apocrine – by membrane budding (loss of cytoplasm)
Holocrine – by membrane rupture
Merocrine secretion
Merocrine secretion

Merocrine (or eccrine) is a term used to classify exocrine glands and their secretions in the study of histology. A cell is classified as merocrine if the secretions of that cell are excreted via exocytosis from secretory cells into an epithelial-walled duct or ducts and then onto a bodily surface or into the lumen.

Merocrine is the most common manner of secretion. The gland releases its product and no part of the gland is lost or damaged (compare holocrine and apocrine).

The term eccrine is specifically used to designate merocrine secretions from sweat glands (eccrine sweat glands),[1] although the term merocrine is often used interchangeably.[2][3]



  1. ^ Eccrine and Apocrine Glands Archived 2009-04-05 at the Wayback Machine Donald J. Baker, M.D., and Warren R. Heymann, M.D. American Academy of Dermatology. Retrieved on April 18, 2010
  2. ^ Melo, Angel I.; González-Mariscal, Gabriela (2010-01-01), Litwack, Gerald (ed.), "Chapter Fifteen - Communication by Olfactory Signals in Rabbits: Its Role in Reproduction", Vitamins & Hormones, Pheromones, Academic Press, vol. 83, pp. 351–371, doi:10.1016/s0083-6729(10)83015-8, retrieved 2020-10-23
  3. ^ Lombardini, Eric D.; Pacheco-Thompson, Michelle E.; Melanson, Mark A. (2013-01-01), Haschek, Wanda M.; Rousseaux, Colin G.; Wallig, Matthew A. (eds.), "Chapter 44 - Radiation and Other Physical Agents", Haschek and Rousseaux's Handbook of Toxicologic Pathology (Third Edition), Boston: Academic Press, pp. 1421–1503, doi:10.1016/b978-0-12-415759-0.00044-3, ISBN 978-0-12-415759-0, retrieved 2020-10-23