Autoradiographic tracing using tritium labeled compounds or cells is a common laboratory technique for light and electron microscopy. This report describes a chemo-graphic effect associated with certain cells in sections from tissues embedded in the new methacrylate plastic embedding compounds. When tissue sections from rats and rhesus monkeys that received no radioisotope were coated with nuclear track emulsion and subsequently developed, cells with morphologic characteristics of mast cells showed significant grain formation over the entire cell. Three different types of methacrylate plastics were tested using rat and monkey tissues and all three were found to promote grain formation over mast cells; however, this phenomenon was not seen in similar tissue sections from paraffin or epoxy embedded material. The properties of methacrylate plastics which promote positive chemography by mast cells may reflect the greater permeability of this class of plastics. Due to their wide tissue distribution, the presence of such chemographically active cells could cause false estimates of the distribution of either exogenous radiolabeled cells or radioisotopes within many tissues.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Medical Laboratory Technology