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Histochemistry 1992 Dec 01;986:355-8. doi: 10.1007/bf00271070.
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Fate of ciliated epidermal cells during early development of Xenopus laevis using whole-mount immunostaining with an antibody against chondroitin 6-sulfate proteoglycan and anti-tubulin: transdifferentiation or metaplasia of amphibian epidermis.

Nishikawa S , Hirata J , Sasaki F .

Xenopus embryonic epidermis changes its cellular composition during development: the appearance of ciliated epidermal cells before hatching is a remarkable characteristic. In this study, the functional change of ciliated cells to mucus-secreting cells was examined with immunocytochemistry using anti-tubulin and anti-chondroitin 6-sulfate (C6S). Before hatching, most epidermal cells were labeled with anti-C6S in a granular fashion. Immunoelectron microscopy revealed that the anti-C6S-positive structure was the mucus granule. Ciliated epidermal cells lacked anti-C6S staining, but were strongly labeled with anti-tubulin. After hatching, most ciliated cells in the surface of the embryo disappeared. During their disappearance, some ciliated cells exhibited anti-C6S-positive granular labeling. This strongly suggests that the disappearance of ciliated cells is a functional conversion to mucus-secreting cells instead of shedding through cell death.

PubMed ID: 1293075
Article link: Histochemistry

References [+] :
Beresford, Direct transdifferentiation: can cells change their phenotype without dividing? 1990, Pubmed