, Volume 43, Issue 1, pp 63–72 | Cite as

Metabolic DNA in the hepatocyte nuclei in newborn rats

  • C. Bibbiani
  • M. P. Viola-Magni


The behaviour in time of labelled nuclear DNA in the hepatocytes of newborn rats was studied using autoradiographic and biochemical techniques in two groups of experiments. In the first group H3-thymidine was injected to the mothers at the 16th day of pregnancy and the amount of labelled DNA was evaluated in the newborns after delivery. In the second group H3-thymidine was injected to the newborns two hours after birth and the labelled DNA was studied at the same time intervals as the first group. The amount of labelled thymidine incorporated into the first group of animals remains constant for the first three days of life, thereafter a reduction in specific activity of DNA is observed concomitant with an increase of the percentage of labelled nuclei and a decrease of the number of grains per nucleus. These results show that mitotic divisions, which are absent during the first three days of life, take place between the third and sixth days of life. The decrease of the specific activity is therefore due to dilution and not to loss of labelled DNA. In the second group of experiments the DNA labelled with H3-thymidine shows a decrease by about 30–40% per day during the first three days of life accompanied by a decrease in the number of grains per nucleus without changes in the percentage of labelled nuclei. These data show that DNA synthesized during the first day after birth is metabolically unstable, unlike that synthesized during foetal life.


Public Health Thymidine Foetal Life Mitotic Division Biochemical Technique 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1975

Authors and Affiliations

  • C. Bibbiani
    • 1
  • M. P. Viola-Magni
    • 2
  1. 1.Istituto di Patologia GeneralePisaItaly
  2. 2.Policlinico MonteluceIstituto di Patologia GeneralePerugiaItaly

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