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

Effect of the mi allele on mast cells, basophils, natural killer cells, and osteoclasts in C57Bl/6J mice.

The osteopetrotic, microphthalmic (mi/mi) mouse lacks functional osteoclasts and has also been reported to be deficient in mast cells and natural-killer (NK) cells. The later deficiencies could be secondary to the osteopetrotic marrow, or a direct result of the mi allele. Therefore, heterozygotes were examined for these cell types, since these mice do not exhibit osteopetrosis. Adult +/mi animals have approximately 50%, and mi/mi animals examined by histologic techniques or tissue histamine levels have 0-10%, of the peritoneal, dermal, and intestinal mast cells compared with that of +/+ animals. Leukocyte histamine, indicative of the number of basophils, demonstrates the same pattern. Histamine content per mast cell in +/+ and +/mi animals is identical. The number of large granular lymphocytes (LGL) in splenic leukocyte preparations from +/mi animals is 50% that of +/+ animals, and these cells are undetectable in preparations from mi/mi mice. NK activity against YAC-1 cells paralleled the number of LGL present. The resorptive response of neonatal calvaria to parathyroid hormone was delayed in the case of cultured +/mi bone compared with that of +/+ bone, but the final rate of calcium release was identical. These data indicate that 1) the presence of one mi allele can affect the development of four distinct cell types, and 2) osteopetrosis alone does not account for the lack of mast cells, basophils, and NK cells in mi/mi mice.[1]


  1. Effect of the mi allele on mast cells, basophils, natural killer cells, and osteoclasts in C57Bl/6J mice. Stechschulte, D.J., Sharma, R., Dileepan, K.N., Simpson, K.M., Aggarwal, N., Clancy, J., Jilka, R.L. J. Cell. Physiol. (1987) [Pubmed]
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