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Exp Gerontol. 1990;25(2):135-40.

Effect of an antioxidant compound (2-mercaptoethanol) on the nerve terminals of the aging small intestine.

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First Department of Anatomy, Semmelweis University Medical School, Budapest, Hungary.


The effect of 2-mercaptoethanol (2-ME) treatment on the nerve elements of the small intestine has been investigated in old mice. In control animals only a few synapses and a very small number of vesicles were found in the nerve terminals. Some of the nerve fibers were observed to be degenerating. After drinking 2-ME daily for 17 months, both the number of synapses and vesicles within the nerve terminals increased. No degenerated fibers were observed. It is assumed that 2-ME has a beneficial influence on the peripheral intestinal nervous system increasing the number of synapses and the vesicle population in the nerve terminals.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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