Life and Medical Sciences
Cell & Developmental Biology
Wiley InterScience Backfile Collection 1832-2000
The stellate cell in the pars distalis of Anolis carolinensis has been studied with the electron microscope. This cell type is characterized by the lack of secretory granules, and it possesses elongate processes that insert between secretory cells. Few cytoplasmic filaments are present in these processes, and desmosomes linking them to adjacent stellate cells or to secretory cells are seen infrequently in control animals. Stellate cells are often encountered in the caudal half of the pars distalis, but they are less commonly found in the rostral half. In animals undergoing thyroidal depression, thyroidectomy cells arise in the caudal pars distalis. Concurrently, stellate cells of that region hypertrophy and exhibit increased numbers of desmosomes, complex intercellular junctions, and micropinocytotic vesicles. Injected horseradish peroxidase penetrates the intercellular spaces, enters the micropinocytotic vesicles, and is transported to the interior of the stellate cell. It is suggested that stellate cells in Anolis under certain conditions may transport materials between the bloodstream and secretory cells.
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