Ultrastructure of the mouse synovial membrane. Development and organization of the extracellular matrix

Y. Okada, I. Nakanishi, K. Kajikawa

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The synovial membrane of the mouse knee joint was examined by electron microscopy and electron microscopic histochemistry, with special reference to the development of the extracellular matrix. In the embryonic synovium, the intercellular spaces were filled with hyaluronate and chondroitin sulfate. The formation of the early joint cavity appeared to be initiated by accumulation of hyaluronate and chondroitin sulfate in the synovial primordium. At the postnatal stage, the synovial primordium differentiated into a true synovial intima that could be easily identified by the presence of two distinct lining cells: fibroblast-like cells (B cells) and phagocytic cells (A cells). Simultaneously, the synovial intima provided the specialized extracellular matrix that was characterized by organized structures of microfibrils, collagen fibers, and fibrous long spacing fibers embedded in a large number of glycoproteins.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)835-843
Number of pages9
JournalArthritis and Rheumatism
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1981


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Rheumatology

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