Electron microscope observations of degenerating and regenerating pancreas following ethionine administration
It has been previously shown, that administration of dl-ethionine (α-amino-γ-ethylmercaptobutyric acid), an amino acid analogue of methionine, results in selective pancreatic acinar cell destruction. This is followed by a subsequent regenerative phase with almost complete restitution of the acinar cells (4, 7,19). The progressive degenerative changes observed by light microscopy have been a decreased perinuclear basophilia; eosinophilic cytoplasm, accompanied by zymogen granule destruction; a disruption of acinar cell pattern; increased vacuolization, disintegration and removal of acinar cells. Factors such as sex (1), protein depleted diet (3, 18), methionine administration (2),animal weight, age, and dosage level of ethionine (3, 4) influence the ultimate course of degeneration and regeneration. A cursory review of the literature indicated that no electron microscope study of this biological model of degeneration and regeneration has been undertaken. A number of ultrastructure studies of normal, starved, refed, pilocarpine-injected and neutral red injected pancreas has been made (11, 12, 13,14, 15, 16, 17, 20, 21).
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