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Histochem J. 1993 Aug;25(8):531-47.

Advantages of histochemistry for the study of cell biology.

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Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston 29425.


Bridging between the two bodies of cell science, histochemistry has brought together knowledge of morphological structures and biochemical constituents and provided insight into the function of one or the other. Where it has localized an enzyme, hormone or other entity of known biological activity to a cell type, histochemistry has contributed insight into the cell's function. By detecting heterogeneity in the content of an enzyme or glycoconjugate within a presumed uniform population of cells, the histochemical approach has differentiated among these cells subtypes with demonstrated or presumed differences in function. On the other hand, in instances where it has located an isozyme, antigen, glycoconjugate or other entity of uncertain significance in a cell or organelle of known function, histochemistry has suggested a possible role for the constituent related to that of the structure. Histochemical examination provides the observer with a different view of body tissues and their composition from that obtained by strictly morphological or chemical techniques. Information acquired through this advantage is cited wherein an immunohistochemical method disclosed previously undiscovered neural organs and carbohydrate histochemistry detected previously unrecognized glycoconjugates.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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