Samples of the respiratory mucosa of children with recurrent respiratory infections suspected of having primary ciliary dyskinesia are routinely fixed with glutaraldehyde before ultrastructural examination. This standard technique, however, may not be optimal for visualizing ciliary components or for preserving several cellular and extracellular structures during dehydration and embedding procedures. In this study, brushes of nasal (28 samples) and/or tracheal (9 samples) mucosa from 32 children with recurrent respiratory tract infections were examined. Twenty-nine samples were fixed with glutaraldehyde supplemented with tannic acid to determine if the ultrastructural analysis of respiratory epithelium and bronchial secretions could be improved. Eight samples were conventionally fixed with glutaraldehyde alone. Lesions of the cellular membrane and damaged cells were easily visualized using tannic acid supplemented fixation. Internal ciliary structures including individual microtubules and dynein arms were also more clearly observed. In addition, the internal structure of microvilli of the respiratory epithelium could be studied and the presence of phospholipid-rich surfactant-like material within nasal and tracheal secretions were visualized after tannic acid supplemented fixation. We suggest that addition of tannic acid during fixation is useful for accurate ultrastructural evaluation of respiratory mucosa in both clinical and experimental situations.

Tannic acid supplemented fixation improves ultrastructural evaluation of respiratory epithelium in children with recurrent respiratory tract infections

SBARBATI, Andrea
1996

Abstract

Samples of the respiratory mucosa of children with recurrent respiratory infections suspected of having primary ciliary dyskinesia are routinely fixed with glutaraldehyde before ultrastructural examination. This standard technique, however, may not be optimal for visualizing ciliary components or for preserving several cellular and extracellular structures during dehydration and embedding procedures. In this study, brushes of nasal (28 samples) and/or tracheal (9 samples) mucosa from 32 children with recurrent respiratory tract infections were examined. Twenty-nine samples were fixed with glutaraldehyde supplemented with tannic acid to determine if the ultrastructural analysis of respiratory epithelium and bronchial secretions could be improved. Eight samples were conventionally fixed with glutaraldehyde alone. Lesions of the cellular membrane and damaged cells were easily visualized using tannic acid supplemented fixation. Internal ciliary structures including individual microtubules and dynein arms were also more clearly observed. In addition, the internal structure of microvilli of the respiratory epithelium could be studied and the presence of phospholipid-rich surfactant-like material within nasal and tracheal secretions were visualized after tannic acid supplemented fixation. We suggest that addition of tannic acid during fixation is useful for accurate ultrastructural evaluation of respiratory mucosa in both clinical and experimental situations.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11562/4228
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