The effect of nerve growth factor (NGF) on ontogenesis of frog mast cells was investigated in vivo by histochemical, morphometric, and ultrastructural analysis. Three groups of tadpoles at various stages of development were used. In the first group, the larvae received i.p. injections of 1 ng NGF/g; the second group received 10 ng NGF/g, while the control group received only the vehicle. The first recognizable mast cells arose symmetrically in the tongue at stage 26 of Witschi's standard table. At stages 26 and 29, the mast cell number in the NGF-injected tadpoles was significantly higher than the control group. From stage 29 onward, the mast cell number rapidly increased in all groups. No significant differences in mast cell number were observed between the control group and the NGF-injected groups at stages 31 and 33. Electron microscopy revealed that at metamorphic climax (stage 33), the mast cells in the NGF-treated groups were more mature than those in the control group. Therefore, nerve growth factor at early stages of tadpole development is likely to induce differentiation of mast cell precursors, while at later stages it is likely to induce maturation of immature mast cells. The close anatomical association between mast cells and perineurium, observed during nerve development, is intriguing. Already in the early stages of nerve development, the mast cells form a network around Schwann cell-axon complexes, together with the perineurial cells. At climax, the mast cells are located between the perineurial layers, suggesting that they may play a role in the tissue-nerve barrier of the perineurium. Nerve growth factor also seems to induce perineurial cell maturation.
|Titolo:||Induced maturation of frog mast cells by nerve growth factor during ontogenesis|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2003|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||1.1 Articolo in rivista|