Does ex vivo labelling of proliferating cells in colonic and vaginal mucosa reflect the S-phase fraction in vivo?

Histochemistry. 1992 Nov;98(4):267-70. doi: 10.1007/BF00271041.


The ex vivo labelling of DNA-synthesizing epithelial cells in colonic and vaginal mucosa was compared with in vivo labelling. For this purpose, in vivo S-phase cells were labelled with [3H]thymidine (Tdr) and ex vivo labelling was continued by culturing tissue specimens in bromodeoxyuridine (BrdU). Various methods of tissue culture were employed in order to improve diffusion of medium (and BrdU) in the tissue. BrdU and 3H-TdR labelling were evaluated by immunohistochemistry and autoradiography respectively. Ex vivo labelling resulted in a patchy distribution of labelled cells, which did not correspond with the 3H-TdR labelling pattern obtained in vivo. Under the described conditions ex vivo labelling does not appear to be a reliable for estimation of the proliferative activities in vivo.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Bromodeoxyuridine
  • Cell Division
  • Female
  • Intestinal Mucosa / cytology*
  • Mice
  • S Phase*
  • Tritium
  • Vagina / cytology*


  • Tritium
  • Bromodeoxyuridine