X-Ray Microanalysis in Biogenic Amine Detection in the Sympatho-Chromaffin System

  • R. M. Santer
  • J. D. Lever
  • T. W. Davies
Conference paper


According to Coupland and Hopwood (1966), during glutaraldehyde fixation, certain biogenic amines form stable Schiff monobases whilst others do not. For example, in biological tissues noradrenaline reacts in this way and is retained in situ. Adrenaline, on the other hand, does not form a stable residue and is eluted during glutaraldehyde fixation. Wood (1974) and Nemes (1975) have shown that such Schiff monobase residues will bind hexavalent metals such as chromium. Thus postchromation with potassium dichromate after initial glutaraldehyde fixation forms the basis of the differential chromaffin reaction by which, for example in the adrenal medulla, noradrenaline (NA) cells can be clearly differentiated from adrenaline (A) cells by the presence of a yellow cytoplasmic colouration (Coupland and Hopwood, 1966). By the same sequential technique a yellow cytoplasmic colouration has also been observed in a proportion of the smallcell population of sympathetic ganglia in the rat (Santer et al. , 1975; Lever et al. , 1976). At a fine–structure level we have observed a morphological comparability between the specific membrane-bounded inclusion granules of adrenomedullary NA cells and those of a type (type II, Lu et al. , 1976) of sympathetic small–granulated (SG) cells in the rat.


Biogenic Amine Adrenal Medulla Sympathetic Ganglion Glutaraldehyde Fixation Amine Level 
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© Springer-Verlag Berlin · Heidelberg 1978

Authors and Affiliations

  • R. M. Santer
  • J. D. Lever
  • T. W. Davies

There are no affiliations available

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