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Int J Mol Med. 2002 Jul;10(1):77-80.

Noradrenergic and cholinergic innervation of the bone marrow.

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Department of Pharmacology of Natural Molecules and General Physiology, University of Rome La Sapienza, Italy.


Bone marrow is supplied by sensory and autonomic innervation. Although it is well established that hematopoiesis is regulated by cytokines and cell-to-cell contacts, the role played by neuromediators on the proliferation, differentiation and release of hematopoietic cells is still controversial. We studied the innervation of rat femur bone marrow by means of fluorescence histochemistry and immunohistochemistry. Glyoxylic acid-induced fluorescence was used to demonstrate catecholaminergic nerve fibers. The immunoperoxidase method with nickel amplification was applied to detect the distribution of nerve fibers using antibodies against the general neuronal marker PGP 9.5 (neuron-specific cytoplasmic protein), while the cholinacetyltransferase immunoreactivity was studied by immunohistochemistry. Our results show the presence of an extensive network of innervation in the rat bone marrow, providing a morphological basis for the neural modulation of hemopoiesis.

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