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Definition: Extremely narrow (average in mammals is about 8 um in diameter) blood vessels linking arterial and venous systems within tissues, and composed of a single layer of endothelial cells. Capillaries provide an interface between the circulatory system and cells allowing filtration of oxygen, nutrients and signaling molecules (for example, hormones) to cells and uptake of metabolic wastes from cells.
Source: Hickman, C.P., et al. 2011. Integrated Principles of Zoology. Fifteenth Edition. McGraw-Hill Higher Education.