PMID: 37141Sep 1, 1979

Electron microscopic radioautographic identification of the ECL cell as the histamine-synthesizing endocrine cell in the rat stomach

W Rubin, B Schwartz


Rat gastric oxyntic glands contain argyrophil "enterochromaffin-like" endocrine cells that synthesize and store histamine and also have APUD ability--they can take up exogenous L-5-hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP), can decarboxylate it to 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT, serotonin) by the enzyme DOPA-decarboxylase, and can store the amine. Previous cytochemical studies suggested that these cells correspond to both the ECL and A-like cells, the two predominant endocrine cells identified by electron microscopy (EM) in rat oxyntic glands. In a recent study, however, we demonstrated that the ECL but not the A-like cell exhibited APUD ability when rat gastric mucosa was incubated with H3-5-HTP and studied by EM radioautography. The purpose of the present study was to identify by EM radioautography the histamine-synthesizing endocrine cells in the rat stomach. Pieces of rat (male Sprague-Dawley) gastric mucosa were incubated in organ culture with L-H3-histidine (50 muCi, 1.8 x 10(-5) M) with and without inhibitors and were processed for LM and EM radioautography. H3-histidine labeled the ECL cells heavily but the A-like and other endocrine cells only lightly. The labeling of ECL cells was only modestly reduced by cycloheximide, an inhibitor of pr...Continue Reading

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