Ultrastructural and cytochemical studies have been made on secretory granules of B-cells (fibroblast-like cells) in the knee-joint synovium. The secretory granules were membrane-bounded spherical or slightly elongated bodies, 150 to 350 nm (average 230 nm) in diameter and had a homogenous matrix with several cores. These granules were found in B-cells of all animal species examined; they were numerous in mice and rats, and few in guinea pigs, rabbits and man. Ultrastructural and cytochemical examinations revealed that the Golgi apparatus was involved in the formation of the secretory granules. Unlike lysosomes, they showed no acid phosphatase activity. The granule matrix was positively stained by Thiéiy's periodic acid-thiocarbohydrazidesilver proteinate technique, and the cores were digested by protease. These findings suggest that the granule matrix contains mucopolysaccharide(s) and/or glycoprotein(s) and the core material is largely proteinaceous in nature.
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