Ultrastructural and immunohistochemical study of phenotypic switch in gastrointestinal smooth muscle cells.
Authors of this article are:
Luesma MJ, Cantarero I, Castiella T, Sánchez-Cano AI, Iruzubieta P, Junquera C.
A summary of the article is shown below:
Dedifferentiation is a loss of phenotypic specialization that converts differentiated cells into adult stem cells in order to proliferate and differentiate into replacement tissue. This occurs in several tissues from various organs, such as smooth muscle cells (SMCs) of the mammalian gastrointestinal tract. The aim of this study was to describe ultrastructural and immunohistochemical changes in SMCs which could be compatible with a dedifferentiation process in human and rabbit intestinal muscles. Ultrastructural study and immunohistochemical staining (SMemb and MyoD) on human and rabbit duodenum tissue sections were performed. In both species, this dedifferentiation process is characterized by a loss of intercellular junctions, increased intercellular spaces, cytoskeletal disorganization, perinuclear accumulation of large vacuoles that tend to fuse, rupture of the vacuole membrane and release of cytoplasmic fragments. Dedifferentiated cells show the characteristic phenotype of a mesenchymal cell with scarce perinuclear cytoplasm, long cytoplasmic prolongations and finely distributed granular chromatin in the nucleus. These morphological changes are accompanied by a modulation to a less mature phenotype showing immunoreactivity for the embryonic form of the myosin heavy chain and for the myogenic regulatory factor MyoD. We suggest that SMC dedifferentiation includes the elimination of the contractile apparatus, the activation of the nucleus and the re-expression of embryonic markers. We described an ultrastructural dedifferentiation process possible in intestinal SMCs. This dedifferentiation process seems to play a key role in the homeostasis of the intestinal muscle.
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dedifferentiation;intestinal smooth muscle cell;phenotypic switch;ultrastructure
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