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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Isolation and characterization of axolemma-enriched fractions from discrete areas of bovine CNS.

Myelinated axons were isolated by flotation from bovine pons, middle cerebellar peduncle, cervical spinal cord and three regions of the subcortical white matter. The myelinated axons were osmotically and mechanically shocked, followed by fractionation on a linear 15% sucrose to 45% sucrose density gradient. Axolemma-enriched fractions (AEF) found in the 28% to 32% sucrose region of the gradient from brainstem and cord white matter had high acetylcholinesterase (AChE) while little or nil AChE activity was found in corresponding AEF derived from the subcortical white matter. Morphologically, the subcortical white matter from all regions contained a heterogeneous population of well-myelinated to thinly myelinated axons, while brainstem and cord regions contained a more homogeneous population of well-myelinated axons. Histochemical analysis of AChE localized this enzyme to axonal elements. The AEF derived from any white matter source had similar polypeptide compositions. AEF derived from subcortical white matter contained two-fold more myelin basic protein and a three-fold greater content of 2' 3' cyclic nucleotide 3' phosphodiesterase ( CNP) compared with AEF derived from well myelinated white matter. We conclude that the purity of the AEF is related to the degree of myelination of the white matter from which the AEF is derived. Homogeneously well myelinated white matter (pons, cerebellar peduncle, cervical spinal cord) yields the highest purity AEF, as judged by the low CNP and myelin basic protein content and highest enrichment in AChE specific activity.[1]


  1. Isolation and characterization of axolemma-enriched fractions from discrete areas of bovine CNS. Detskey, P.Z., Bigbee, J.W., DeVries, G.H. Neurochem. Res. (1988) [Pubmed]
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