Studies on the oxidizing system in Holt's medium for histochemical demonstration of esterase activity

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S Kirkeby, S R Blecher

Esterase activity in guinea-pig thyroid and mouse epididymis epithelial cells has been studied using 5-bromoindoxyl acetate as substrate. The pattern of esterase activity in the thyroid of the guinea-pig is constant, irrespective of whether ferri-ferrocyanide (FFC) or certain copper compounds are used as oxidizing agents in the incubation medium. The intensity of the coloured reaction product is increased when cobalt or manganese are added to the incubation medium. Activity is depressed by high concentrations of FFC when resent in incubation medium or preincubational buffer only. Epididymis cells contain an esterase activity which is not inhibited by conventional SH blocking agents, nor by high concentrations of FFC. From these results it appears that the mode of action of FFC in Holt's medium is as follows. At low concentrations FFC appears to act primarily as a catalytic agent in oxidation of indoxyl to indigoid. At high concentration FFC acts as an inhibitor of guinea-pig thyroid esterase, by oxidation of SH groups in the active centre. The esterase of mouse epididymis cell type EH 1 is not subject to this inhibition by FFC, presumably because it does not contain accessible SH groups in the active centre.
Original languageEnglish
JournalActa Histochemica
Volume62
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)44-56
Number of pages12
ISSN0065-1281
Publication statusPublished - 1978

Bibliographical note

Keywords: Animals; Culture Media; Epididymis; Esterases; Ferricyanides; Ferrocyanides; Guinea Pigs; Histocytochemistry; Male; Mice; Oxidation-Reduction; Sulfhydryl Compounds; Thyroid Gland

ID: 10252971