Background: In vertebrates, the presence of enteric worms can induce structural changes to the alimentary canal impacting on the neuroendocrine system, altering the proper functioning of the gastrointestinal tract and affecting the occurrence and relative density of endocrine cells (ECs). This account represents the first immunohistochemistry and ultrastructure-based study which documents the intimate relationship between the intestinal mucous cells and ECs in a fish-helminth system, investigating the potential effects of enteric neuromodulators on gut mucus secretion/discharge. Methods: A modified dual immunohisto- and histochemical staining technique was applied on intestinal sections from both infected and uninfected fish. Sections were incubated in antisera to a range of neuromodulators (i.e. leu-enkephalin, met-enkephalin, galanin and serotonin) and the glycoconjugate histochemistry of the mucous cells was determined using a subsequent alcian blue - periodic acid Schiff staining step. Dual fluorescent staining on sections prepared for confocal laser scanning microscopy and transmission electron microscopy were also used to document the relationship between ECs and mucous cells. Results: From a total of 26 specimens of Squalius cephalus sampled from the River Paglia, 16 (i.e. 62 %) specimens were found to harbour an infection of the acanthocephalan Pomphorhynchus laevis (average intensity of infection 9.2 ± 0.8 parasites host-1, mean ± standard error). When acanthocephalans were present, the numbers of mucous cells (most notably those containing acidic or mixed glycoconjugates) and ECs secreting leu-enkephalin, met-enkephalin, galanin, serotonin were significantly higher than those seen on sections from uninfected fish. The relationship between met-enkephalin-like or serotonin-like ECs and lectin DBA positive mucous cells was demonstrated through a dual fluorescent staining. The presence of tight connections and desmosomes between mucous and ECs in transmission electron micrographs provides further evidence of this intimate relationship. Conclusions: The presence of P. laevis induces an increase in the number of enteric ECs that are immunoreactive to leu- and met-enkephalin, galanin, and serotonin anti-sera. The mucous cells hyperplasia and enhanced mucus secretion in the helminth-infected intestines could be elicited by the increase in the number of ECs which release these regulatory substances.

Enteric neuromodulators and mucus discharge in a fish infected with the intestinal helminth Pomphorhynchus laevis

GIARI, Luisa;SAYYAF DEZFULI, Bahram
Ultimo
2015

Abstract

Background: In vertebrates, the presence of enteric worms can induce structural changes to the alimentary canal impacting on the neuroendocrine system, altering the proper functioning of the gastrointestinal tract and affecting the occurrence and relative density of endocrine cells (ECs). This account represents the first immunohistochemistry and ultrastructure-based study which documents the intimate relationship between the intestinal mucous cells and ECs in a fish-helminth system, investigating the potential effects of enteric neuromodulators on gut mucus secretion/discharge. Methods: A modified dual immunohisto- and histochemical staining technique was applied on intestinal sections from both infected and uninfected fish. Sections were incubated in antisera to a range of neuromodulators (i.e. leu-enkephalin, met-enkephalin, galanin and serotonin) and the glycoconjugate histochemistry of the mucous cells was determined using a subsequent alcian blue - periodic acid Schiff staining step. Dual fluorescent staining on sections prepared for confocal laser scanning microscopy and transmission electron microscopy were also used to document the relationship between ECs and mucous cells. Results: From a total of 26 specimens of Squalius cephalus sampled from the River Paglia, 16 (i.e. 62 %) specimens were found to harbour an infection of the acanthocephalan Pomphorhynchus laevis (average intensity of infection 9.2 ± 0.8 parasites host-1, mean ± standard error). When acanthocephalans were present, the numbers of mucous cells (most notably those containing acidic or mixed glycoconjugates) and ECs secreting leu-enkephalin, met-enkephalin, galanin, serotonin were significantly higher than those seen on sections from uninfected fish. The relationship between met-enkephalin-like or serotonin-like ECs and lectin DBA positive mucous cells was demonstrated through a dual fluorescent staining. The presence of tight connections and desmosomes between mucous and ECs in transmission electron micrographs provides further evidence of this intimate relationship. Conclusions: The presence of P. laevis induces an increase in the number of enteric ECs that are immunoreactive to leu- and met-enkephalin, galanin, and serotonin anti-sera. The mucous cells hyperplasia and enhanced mucus secretion in the helminth-infected intestines could be elicited by the increase in the number of ECs which release these regulatory substances.
2015
Bosi, Giampaolo; Shinn, Andrew Paul; Giari, Luisa; SAYYAF DEZFULI, Bahram
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11392/2330497
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