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Definition of Surfactant

Surfactant: A fluid secreted by the cells of the alveoli (the tiny air sacs in the lungs) that serves to reduce the surface tension of pulmonary fluids; surfactant contributes to the elastic properties of pulmonary tissue, preventing the alveoli from collapsing.

Source: MedTerms™ Medical Dictionary
Last Editorial Review: 10/30/2013

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