Satellite cells were studied in the undamaged part of the rat soleus muscle rendered partially necrotic by a subcutaneous injection of notexin, the myotoxic toxin purified from the venom of the Australian snake Notechis scutatus scutatus. Nuclei of satellite cells were twice as numerous as in the controls, with a decreasing gradient in the number of satellite cells with distance from the necrotic area. The cells were in an activated state with an increased cytoplasmic volume and prominent organelles. Occasionally, mitosis of some satellite cells was observed. Between the satellite cell and the muscle fibre, an unusually wide space was frequently seen, within which a “new” basal lamina was often visible. It is suggested that the role of the satellite cells of undamaged muscle fibres in the regeneration of necrotic muscle is worthy of more detailed investigation.
Satellite cells Skeletal muscle Snake-venom toxin Muscle regeneration Electron microscopy Rat