Send to

Choose Destination
Cell Motil Cytoskeleton. 1989;12(3):157-68.

Cellular morphogenesis and the formation of marginal bands in amphibian splenic erythroblasts.

Author information

Department of Biological Sciences, Hunter College of the City University of New York, NY 10021.


The spleen of Ambystoma mexicanum (axolotl) larvae develops as a closed sac containing differentiating nucleated erythrocytes, and is typically isolated from the general circulation for about 10 days post-hatching. Beginning 3-4 days posthatching, it can be removed intact for examination of the morphology and cytoskeletal structure of the erythropoietic cells. In the smallest (earliest) spleens, spheroidal cells predominate, while older ones contain a preponderance of cells exhibiting the flattened elliptical morphology typical of all non-mammalian vertebrate erythrocytes. Most striking in the splenic erythroid population are cells with singly or doubly pointed morphology. Though common in the developing spleen and circulation of young larvae, pointed cells are less frequently encountered in the circulation of older larvae, indicating that they are intermediate stages in the differentiation of spheroids to flattened ellipsoids. This is supported by structural observations on cytoskeletons prepared from the splenic cells. Incomplete singly and doubly pointed marginal bands of microtubules are observed, many of which contain a pair of centrioles within or close to a pointed end, suggestive of organizing center function. The observations are consistent with a sequence of changes in cell morphology from spherical to doubly pointed to singly pointed to flattened ellipse, causally linked to stages of marginal band biogenesis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Loading ...
Support Center