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Ergebnisse der physiologie biologischen chemie und by H. H. Dale (auth.)

By H. H. Dale (auth.)

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Thus the experiments demonstrate unequivocally that there is a space available for the penetration of sucrose amounting to at least t2 % of the tissue, yet this is not occupied by sucrose when presented by way of blood even after 2 hours. The concept of the blood-brain barrier is thus sustained, but of course the anomaly between the anatomical and functional studies remains. 3. Quantitative estimates of the extraceUular space. Clearly, the most physiological method of measuring the extracellular space would be to maintain a known concentration of an extracellular tag in the blood for a very long time so that equilibrium between plasma and the space could take place; analysis of blood and tissue would then give the magnitude of the space.

I~IESSlNG(1950) has correlated changes in the number of processes belonging to astrocytes with narcosis. In a recent study, KLATZOand MIOuEI. (1960) have shown that fluorescein-labelled protein is taken up by microglia and astrocytes in tissue culture; according to them this indicates pinocytosis. When the brain is damaged by cold it is the astrocytes and oligodendroglia that show accumulation of the intravenously injected protein. According to OKSCHE(t958) in primitive forms such as the frog the ependymal cells carried glycogen to the neurones; as the brain became thicker this function was taken over by the vascular system and astrocytes.

Their functions have been variously described as to insulate synapses, to act as glands of secretion, or to synthesize 3* 36 HUGH DAVSON: The cerebrospinal fluid myelin 1; because of their closer association with the neurones and more remote association with the vascular tree it has been suggested (SCHEIBSL and SCHEIBEL 1958) t h a t t h e y are linked in a bucket-carrying mechanism whereby metabolites pass from capillary to astrocyte, to oligodendroglia, to neurone. According to CAMMERMEYER [1960 (a), (b)], however, on the basis of light microscopy of serial sections, the oligodendroglia, because of their constant association with blood vessels, especially in the region of bifurcation, were able to control the diameters of these vessels, presumably b y virtue of their contractile powers.

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