The Histochemical Journal

, Volume 20, Issue 4, pp 207–214 | Cite as

A quantitative histochemical study of 5′-nucleotidase activity in rat liver using the lead salt method and polyvinyl alcohol

  • Wilma M. Frederiks
  • Frans Marx


5′-Nucleotidase (EC activity was demonstrated in cryostat sections of rat liver using the Wachstein—Meisel medium and polyvinyl alcohol as tissue stabilizer. Optimum activity was obtained using an incubation medium containing 5mm AMP, 10mm magnesium chloride, 7.2mm lead nitrate, 0.1m Tris—maleate buffer, pH 7.2, and 17% (w/v) polyvinyl alcohol (Sigma, type III). The activity was localized at the bile canalicular and sinusoidal side of the plasma membranes of liver parenchymal cells as well as in the plasma membranes of endothelial cells of central veins and in fibroblasts surrounding portal tracts. The reaction was specific for 5′-nucleotidase because it was inhibited by ADP. Alkaline phosphatase did not interfere in the reaction. Cytophotometric analysis revealed a linear relationship between the formation of the final reaction product and incubation times up to 20 min and section thicknesses up to 8εm. The activity in pericentral zones was 1.35 times the activity in periportal zones. The Michaelis constant for AMP was 1.4mm in pericentral zones and 0.8mm in periportal zones, suggesting that the bile canalicular and sinusoidal enzymes differ in their kinetic characteristics.


Polyvinyl Alcohol Central Vein Cryostat Section Magnesium Chloride Portal Tract 
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Copyright information

© Chapman and Hall Ltd 1988

Authors and Affiliations

  • Wilma M. Frederiks
    • 1
  • Frans Marx
    • 1
  1. 1.Laboratory of Histology and Cell BiologyUniversity of Amsterdam, Academic Medical CentreAmsterdamThe Netherlands

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