Cell and Tissue Research

, Volume 150, Issue 1, pp 79–94 | Cite as

Investigations on adrenocortical mitochondria turnover

I. Effect of chronic treatment with ACTH on the size and number of rat zona fasciculata mitochondria
  • Gastone G. Nussdorfer
  • Piera Rebuffat
  • Giuseppina Mazzocchi
  • Anna S. Belloni
  • Virgilio Meneghelli
Article

Summary

The effects of a chronic administration of ACTH (up to 36 consecutive days) on the mitochondria of the zona fasciculata of the rat adrenal cortex were investigated by stereologic techniques. It was found that, while the volume of the mitochondrial compartment significantly increases in relation to the duration of treatment, the size and number of mitochondria display a different pattern. Up to the 9th day of hormone treatment mitochondria significantly increase in volume, whereas their number per cell is only slightly increased. After 12 days of ACTH-treatment there is a tremendous increase in the number of organelles per cell, resulting in a significant decrease in their average volume. After 24 and 36 consecutive days of treatment the number of mitochondria per cell as well as their average volume both show a slight but significantly constant increase.

The hypothesis that ACTH controls the processes of growth and division of adrenal mitochondria is discussed in the light of evidence indicating that mitochondria contain a complete genetic apparatus largely independent of nuclear control.

Key words

Adrenal cortex Mitochondria ACTH Stereology Electron microscopy 

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1974

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gastone G. Nussdorfer
    • 1
  • Piera Rebuffat
    • 1
  • Giuseppina Mazzocchi
    • 1
  • Anna S. Belloni
    • 1
  • Virgilio Meneghelli
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Anatomy, Laboratory of Electron MicroscopyUniversity of PaduaPaduaItaly

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