Ependymal cells are the cells that form the epithelial lining of the ventricles in the brain and the central canal of the spinal cord.
The functions of the ependymal cells is as follows:
1) they give rise to the epithelial layer surrounding the choroid plexus in the lateral ventricles of the cerebral hemisphere. These epithelial cells mainly produce cerebro – spinal fluid.
2) the ependymal cells have cilia , facing the cavity of the ventricles. The co ordinated beating of cilia influences the direction of flow of the cerebro spinal fluid, distribution of neuro transmitters and other messengers to the neurons .
3) ependymal cells called tanycytes line the floor of the third ventricle in the brain. Tanycytes play an important role in the transport of hormones in the brain.
Ependymal cells are derived from a layer of embryonic tissue known as neuro ectoderm.