The Ultrastructural Basis of Capillary Permeability

  • Elizabeth M. Burns
  • Thomas W. Kruckeberg
Conference paper
Part of the NATO ASI Series book series (volume 33)


The highest level of integrative brain function requires homeostasis and isolation of the internal milieu of the brain. Homeostasis and isolation are accomplished by a constellation of brain capillary wall morphological, biochemical, and physiological mechanisms that constitute the blood-brain barrier (BBB). The ultrastructural basis of the BBB consists of tight interendothelial junctions, the absence of endothelial pores, a paucity of pinocytotic vesicles, and an increased numerical density of endothelial mitochondria. The endothelial membrane is supported by pericytes, basal lamina, and astrocytic end-foot processes.


Blood-brain barrier tight interendothelial junctions endothelial pores pinocytotic vesicles endothelial mitochondria pericytes basal lamina glial end-foot processes 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1989

Authors and Affiliations

  • Elizabeth M. Burns
    • 1
  • Thomas W. Kruckeberg
    • 2
  1. 1.The Ohio State UniversityColumbusUSA
  2. 2.The University of IowaIowa CityUSA

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