Intraepithelial Lymphocytes in Crypts and Villi of Rat Jejunum

Original article


W. Sawicki, M.A. Mughal , Saiha Zubi

Department of Anatomy, (Histology division), Faculty of Medicine,Al-Arab Medical University, Benghazi, S.P.L.A.J.

Garyounis Medical Journal Vol.8, No.2 July 1985:123-135


In the epithelium of the rat jejunum numerous small and large intraepithelial lymphocytes (IL) were found. The frequency of IL in the crypt epithelium was 1.1% whereas in the villus epithelium it was 14.2%. About 30% of villus IL contained cytoplasmic granules, which could be stained with Toluidine blue at pH 1. The frequency distribution of agranulated and granulated, small and large IL along the villus was normal with the highest frequency at 0.2 – 0.7 fraction of normalized villus length. A significant shift between distributions of agranulated and granulated, small/large IL was found. The mean number of cytoplasmic granules per IL section increased along the villus up to the 0.7 fraction of its length. It is suggested that the pattern of frequency distributions of agranulated and granulated IL along the villus reflects chiefly the rate and topography of influx/efflux of lymphocytes to and from the epithelium. Small and large lymphocytes enter the epithelium as agranulated cells in the region of crypt/villus junction and along the basal quarter of villus. Starting at the mid of villus length, the efflux of IL from ep it helium predominates resulting in the reduction of their number toward the villus tip. While migrating along the villus, some IL acquire cytoplasmic granules.

Keywords: Intraepithelial Lymphocytes in Crypts and Villi of Rat Jejunum