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Tissue Cell. 1990;22(2):149-55.

The cell junctions of the notochord of Xenopus laevis tadpoles.

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Institute of Cytology, University of Bonn, Federal Republic of Germany.


The cell junctions of the notochord of Xenopus laevis tadpoles were examined with the electron microscope using thin sections, lanthanum tracer experiments, and freeze-fracture replicas. Both the peripheral and vacuolated cells of the notochord are connected by numerous spot desmosomes characterized by an intercellular desmogloea and intermediate filaments on the cytoplasmic sides. The peripheral cells also display numerous hemidesmosomes facing the underlying basal lamina. Staining with rhodamine-phalloidin for F-actin yielded negative results and suggested that adhaerens-type junctions are absent. Tracer experiments with lanthanum and freeze-fracture replicas clearly revealed the presence of gap junctions between both cell types but no indications of tight junctions were found and no intercellular barrier existed for tracer infiltration of the notochord.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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