This research was supported through funds provided by USPHS grants HD 00132 and HD 00971 and by the Ford Foundation. We also acknowledge financial assistance from the following drug houses: Abbott Laboratories, Ayerst Laboratories, Lilly Research Laboratories, Ortho Research Foundation, Schering Corporation, Sterling-Winthrop Research Institute, Syntex Research, and Wyeth Laboratories.
Studies on the fine structure of ovarian steroid-secreting cells in the rabbit. I. The normal interstitial cells†
Article first published online: 3 FEB 2005
Copyright © 1968 Wiley-Liss, Inc.
American Journal of Anatomy
Volume 123, Issue 3, pages 441–473, November 1968
How to Cite
Davies, J. and Broadus, C. D. (1968), Studies on the fine structure of ovarian steroid-secreting cells in the rabbit. I. The normal interstitial cells. Am. J. Anat., 123: 441–473. doi: 10.1002/aja.1001230304
- Issue published online: 3 FEB 2005
- Article first published online: 3 FEB 2005
In terms of their light microscopic appearance and fine structure the ovarian interstitial cells of the rabbit are typical steroid-secreting cells. They are characterized by an abundance of agranular endoplasmic reticulum, spherical mitochondria with closely packed lamellar cristae, lipid droplets which appear to arise independently of the endoplasmic reticulum, conspicuous Golgi areas, a cytoplasm containing ribosomes and variable numbers of glycogen granules. A feature of the differentiation of the cells from the theca interna of atretic follicles or the stroma is the enlargement of the multiple Golgi areas and the progressive accumulation of agranular endoplasmic reticulum, possibly by “budding” from the Golgi cisternae. “Light” and “dark” cells are observed, the latter being characterized by a more closely packed agranular endoplasmic reticulum which tends to be tubular in type, that of the “light” cell being vesicular. Electron dense material (lipid?) is found in the vesicles and tubules of the agranular endoplasmic reticulum and in the Golgi cisternae; it may indicate a role of these structures in the biosynthesis of steroidal hormone. No fine structural changes specifically associated with pregnancy were observed. Degenerative changes are common and are described. The role of the interstitial cells, especially in relation to the production of 20 alpha-hydroxyprogesterone, is discussed.