Reinflation of the alveoli following exhalation is made easier by pulmonary surfactant, which is a phospholipid and protein mixture that reduces surface tension in the thin fluid coating within all alveoli. The fluid coating is produced by the body in order to facilitate the transfer of gases between blood and alveolar air. The surfactant is produced by great alveolar cells (granular pneumonocytes, a cuboidal epithelia), which are the most numerous cells in the alveoli, yet do not cover as much surface area as the squamous alveolar cells (a squamous epithelium).

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