TUNEL staining and electron microscopy studies of apoptotic changes in the guinea pig vallate taste cells after unilateral glossopharyngeal denervation

The results revealed that only a very few TUNEL-positive nuclei indicating apoptosis were present in normal taste buds, but in surgically denervated papillae, they increased in number from 6 h–12 h after surgery, reached at peak on day 1 and gradually decreased

Y.-J. Huang

2003

Scholarcy highlights

  • On the basis of our previous report that unilateral glossopharyngeal neurectomy in the guinea pig resulted in degeneration and disappearance of taste buds in ipsilateral vallate papillae, it is reasonable to speculate that gustatory denervation may enhance apoptosis of taste bud cells, with taste buds decreasing in number and disappearing after neurectomy
  • The results revealed that only a very few TUNEL-positive nuclei indicating apoptosis were present in normal taste buds, but in surgically denervated papillae, they increased in number from 6 h–12 h after surgery, reached at peak on day 1 and gradually decreased
  • We conclude that: glossopharyngeal neurectomy enhanced apoptosis of vallate taste bud cells in guinea pig; appropriate gustatory nerve innervation is an essential component for the maintenance of the taste bud, and may play a role in apoptosis of taste cells

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