We have recently reported that salivary gland cells express the lymphatic endothelial cell marker podoplanin. The present study was aimed to immunohistochemically investigate the expression of the myoepithelial cell marker α-smooth muscle actin (SMA) on podoplaninpositive cells in mouse parotid and sublingual glands, and to elucidate podoplanin localization in salivary gland myoepithelial cells by immunoelectron microscopic study. The distribution of myoepithelial cells expressing podoplanin and α-SMA was examined by immunofluorescent staining, and the localization of reaction products of anti-podoplanin antibody was investigated by pre-embedded immunoelectron microscopic method. In immunohistochemistry, the surfaces of both the mucous acini terminal portion and ducts were covered by a number of extensive myoepithelial cellular processes expressing podoplanin, and the immunostaining level with anti-podoplanin antibody to myoepithelial cells completely coincided with the immunostaining level with anti-α-SMA antibody. These findings suggest that podoplanin is a salivary gland myoepithelial cell antigen, and that the detection level directly reflects the myoepithelial cell distribution. In immunoelectron microscopic study, a number of reaction products with anti-podoplanin antibody were found at the Golgi apparatus binding to the endoplasmic reticulum in the cytoplasm of myoepithelial cells between sublingual gland acinar cells, and were also found at the myoepithelial cell membrane. These findings suggest that salivary gland myoepithelial cells constantly produce podoplanin and glycosylate at the Golgi apparatus, and transport them to the cell membrane. Podoplanin may be involved in maintaining the homeostasis of myoepithelial cells through its characteristic as a mucin-type transmembrane glycoprotein.
- Salivary gland
- α-smooth muscle actin
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pathology and Forensic Medicine
- Cell Biology