The possible function of globules and irregular membrane-bound masses in the gonadotropin cells of the pituitary of Clarias gariepinus was studied. Strong secretory stimulation led to the disappearance of the secretory granules from gonadotropin cells but globules and irregular masses remained present. Acid phosphatase was detected enzyme-cytochemically in both globules and irregular masses. Radiolabelling with tritiated amino acids followed by autoradiography demonstrated that globules received radioactive material after secretory granules. The latter received radioactive material within 75 min of administration of radioactive amino acids but globules and irregular masses did not. Although some globules became radioactively labelled within 24 h of the administration of radioactive amino acids, irregular masses remained unlabelled during this period. Secretory granules reacted positively with antisera against α and β gonadotropin subunits, whereas globules and irregular masses only reacted with the antiserum against the β subunit. A moderate anti-7B2 immunoreactivity was demonstrated in secretory granules and globules, whereas irregular masses labelled strongly. The combined cytological results indicate that globules and irregular masses are degradative, possibly crinophagic structures which develop by fusional events from secretory granules to globules and then to irregular masses.
- Cell- och molekylärbiologi (30108)