Author(s): Lundh B, Brockstedt U, Kristensson K
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Abstract Sections from the nasal cavity of 12-day-old Swiss albino mice (NMRI strain) were subjected to lectin histochemistry. A panel of biotinylated lectins (Con A, WGA, s-WGA, PNA, SBA, DBA and UEA I) and a horseradish peroxidase-conjugated lectin (GSA II) showed marked differences in binding to the respiratory and the neuroepithelial cells. SBA (affinity for galactose and N-acetylgalactosamine), PNA (galactose) and WGA (sialic acids and N-acetylglucosamine) labelled the receptor neurons in the olfactory and vomeronasal epithelium. DBA (N-acetylgalactosamine) labelled a subgroup of about 5\% of the olfactory receptor neurons, but most neurons in the vomeronasal organ. UEA I (fucose) and s-WGA (N-acetylglucosamine) intensely labelled the entire nerve cell population in the vomeronasal organ, but in the olfactory epithelium the labelling with these lectins was stratified. In the respiratory epithelium the ciliated cells were labelled with WGA and s-WGA, while the secretory cells bound most of the lectins. Thus different sugars are exposed on the surface of the different types of epithelia in the nasal cavity, providing a basis for selectivity in microbial attacks on these areas.
This article was published in Histochem J
and referenced in Virology & Mycology