Wilhelm Roux's archives of developmental biology

, Volume 194, Issue 8, pp 453–461 | Cite as

A new biochemical marker for foot-specific cell differentiation in hydra

  • Sabine Hoffmeister
  • H. Chica Schaller


Mucous cells in the basal disk of hydra contain a peroxidase-like enzyme allowing specific staining of these cells with substrates for peroxidases. The peroxidase activity provides an excellent marker for foot mucous cell, differentiation and was used to follow the reappearance of footspecific cells during foot regeneration after amputation. By choosing the appropriate either soluble or precipitable substrate the peroxidase reaction was used both for a qualitative and for a quantitative evaluation of foot-specific differentiation in hydra. For histological studies diaminobenzidien was found to be a suitable substrate which forms a dark brown precipitate within the cells containing the peroxidase activity. For a quantitative evaluation of foot regeneration the soluble substrate 2,2-azino-di(3-ethyl-benzthiazoline-sulfonic acid-6) ammonium salt was used which after reaction with the enzyme gives rise to a diffusible green reaction product the concentration of which can be measured by its specific absorption at 415 nm. Based on the diffusible enzyme product a new quantitative assay for foot regenration was developed and applied to confirm the effect and specificity of morphogenetic substances which either inhibit or activate foot or head regeneration in hydra.

Key words

Hydra Peroxidase activity Foot cell differentiation Foot activator Foot inhibitor Head inhibitor 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1985

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sabine Hoffmeister
    • 1
  • H. Chica Schaller
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of BiophysicsMax-Planck-Institute for Medical ResearchHeidelbergGermany

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