Orchidectomy affects the innervation of the rat thymus
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To assess a putative role of the neural pathways in transfer of information from the gonads to the thymus, adult AO rats were orchidectomized (ORX) or sham ORX (controls); sacrificed 1, 3, 7, or 15 days later and their thymi were analyzed for: (a) the concentrations of noradrenaline (NA), dopamine (DA) and serotonin (5-HT) and distribution of monoamine-containing nerve profiles and (b) the acetylcholinesterase (AChE) activity and distribution of AChE-containing nerve profiles. Three days after the castration, an elevation in the level of both catecholamines, reflecting an increase in the overall intensity of nerve fibers autofluorescence, was found. Seven days post castration neither NA nor DA concentration differed from the appropriate control values, while 15 days after the surgery the concentration of NA was lower than that in the controls, most likely, due to diminished density of noradrenergic nerve profiles. In both the rats sacrificed 7 and 15 days after orchidectomy the concent...ration of 5-HT was reduced as result of a decrease in the density of 5-HT-containing autofluorescent cells. The activity of AChE was depressed one day after the surgery; then increased, so that 3 days post castration its value was higher than that in the sham ORX. After this increase, AChE activity decreased being, at postoperative day 7 and 15, lower than that in the controls. It seems that this decrease in AChE activity reflected, not only a reduction in the density of AChE-containing nerve fibers, but also a decrease in the density of AChE positive cells. Thus, the results indicate that orchidectomy can evoke changes in the T-cell maturation altering modulatory influences on this process coming via neural route, as well as those coming from the mast cells and AChE positive epithelial cells which constitute important component of the thymus microenvironment.
Keywords:orchidectomy / rat thymus / AChE activity / monoamine concentration / AChE-positive nerve fibers / noradrenergic nerve fibers
Source:International Journal of Neuroscience, 1999, 97, 1-2, 115-129
- Taylor & Francis Ltd, Abingdon