Telocytes form networks in normal cardiac tissues
M.C. Rusu1, F. Pop2. S. Hostiuc3, G.C. Curca4, A.M. Jianu5 and D. Paduraru6
1Division of Anatomy, Faculty of Dental Medicine, “Carol Davila” University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Bucharest, Romania, 2Division of Pathologic Anatomy, Faculty of Medicine, “Carol Davila” University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Bucharest, Romania, 3”Mina Minovici” National Institute of Legal Medicine, Bucharest, Romania, 4Division of Legal Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, “Carol Davila” University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Bucharest, Romania, 5Department of Anatomy, “Victor Babes” University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Timisoara, Romania and 6Division of Anatomy, “Gr.T.Popa” University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Iasi, Romania.
Offprint requests to: Florinel Pop, M.D., Ph.D., “Prof.Dr. D. Gerota” Hospital, Ferdinand Blvd. 50, Sector 2, Bucharest, Romania. e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Summary. Telocytes (TC) are a class of interstitial cells present in heart. Their characteristic feature is the presence of extremely long and thin prolongations (called telopodes). Therefore, we were interested to see whether or not TCs form networks in normal cardiac tissues, as previously suggested.
Autopsy samples of cardiac tissues were obtained from 13 young human cadavers, without identifiable cardiac pathology and with a negative personal history of cardiovascular disease. Immunohistochemistry on formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded tissues was performed using monoclonal antibodies for CD117/c-kit. Additionally, ventricular samples from 5 Sprague-Dawley rats were ultrastructurally evaluated under transmission electron microscopy.
We found c-kit positive cells with TC features in subepicardium, as well in subepicardial arteries and in subepicardial fat. TCs were also present in the subendocardium. Light and electron microscopy revealed the existence of intramyocardial networks built up by bipolar TCs. Larger c-kit positive multipolar TCs were found between cardiac muscle bundles.
Our results support the existence of a cardiac network of telocytes. Histol Histopathol 27, 807-816 (2012)
Key words: Telocytes, Myocardium, Epicardium, Endocardium, CD117