The monospecific antibody directed against cytokeratin 18 consistently immunostained microfold cells (M-cells) in the ileum epithelium of pigs. In adult pigs, M-cells were numerously distributed in the dome epithelium overlying Peyer's patches, especially in the crypt epithelium to the lower dome epithelium. The M-cells presented in the crypt epithelium were mostly columnar in shape and showed a gradual transition from columnar cells to pocket-like cells as they drew near the lower dome epithelium. In contrast, the M-cells that were sporadically located in the villus epithelium were all columnar and similar to enterocytes in shape. In newborn pigs, a few M-cells were observed only in the infant dome epithelium, which were all columnar resembling the enterocytes. Of the 19 lectins used, the dome epithelial cells were selectively stained by lectins from Ulex europaeus-I and Anguuilla anguilla. Especially, the M-cells were stained by lectin from Anguuilla anguilla although the intensity varied on individual pigs. Lymphoid follicles in the lamina propria were well developed in the adults compared to these in the newborns, and lymphoid cells were more populated in the lower part than the upper part of the dome. The present results provide available information to understand the differentiation and functional heterogeneity of porcine M-cells.
- Cytokeratin 18
- Microfold cell
- Pig intestine
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)