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

Reaccumulation of thyroglobulin and colloid in rat and mouse thyroid follicles during intense thyrotropin stimulation. A clue to the pathogenesis of colloid goiters.

Since Marine's observations some 50 years ago, it has been generally accepted that colloid goiters invariably result from colloid repletion of originally hyperplastic goiters after cessation of the goitrogenic stimulus. However, clinical observations suggest that many goiters never go through a stage of hyperplasia, but are colloid-rich from the beginning. We have injected rats and mice with thyrotropin (TSH), three times a day for 4 d, while the animals were kept on an iodine-rich diet (HID). Additional groups of animals were fed an iodine-poor diet (LID) or a diet containing 0.15% propylthiouracil (PTU) or 1% sodium perchlorate (ClO4). At intervals, thyroid weight, DNA, iodine and thyroglobulin content, thyroglobulin iodination, and intracellular droplet formation were measured. Histologic sections were also prepared and stained with periodic acid Schiff. Furthermore, thyroxine concentration was measured in the serum. Thyroglobulin content dropped by approximately 30% in HID animals but by 60% in all other groups 1 d after starting TSH. Thereafter, thyroglobulin reaccumulation occurred and droplet formation correspondingly decreased despite continuous heavy TSH stimulation. The largest amount of thyroglobulin was reaccumulated in HID animals followed by the PTU/LID groups, whereas no reaccumulation was observed in the ClO4 group. Reaccumulation of thyroglobulin only occurred if there was concomitant organification of at least some iodine. The subsequent phases of depletion and reaccumulation of thyroglobulin were mirrored by the morphology of the follicular lumina, the staining properties of the colloid and the serum T4 concentration. These observations suggest that endocytosis gradually becomes refractory to continuous TSH stimulation if a certain minimal amount of iodine is available for organic binding. Thus, primarily colloid-rich goiters may form in the presence of continuously higher than normal thyrotropin levels without a previous stage of follicular hyperplasia. The view should be revised that accumulation of colloid and intense thyrotropin stimulation are mutually exclusive events.[1]


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