Structure and permeability differ in subepithelial villus and Peyer's patch follicle capillaries

Gastroenterology. 1991 May;100(5 Pt 1):1172-9.


Intravenously injected sheep antilaminin immunoglobulin G conjugated with horseradish peroxidase uniformly labeled the basement membrane of mouse villus epithelium but not that of Peyer's patch follicle domes, although laminin is abundant in both. This suggested differences in the permeability of capillaries underlying these epithelia. Therefore, the fine structure of mouse subepithelial villus and follicle capillaries and their permeability to selected macromolecules was compared. Fenestrae, abundant in villus capillaries, were extremely rare in dome capillaries as assessed by electron microscopy of tissue sections and freeze-fracture replicas. Two minutes after IV-injected horseradish peroxidase and 9 minutes after IV-injected hemoglobin, reaction product decorated the pericapillary space of 97% and 95%, respectively, of capillary profiles in the upper half of villi but only 28% and 2%, respectively, of capillary profiles in the upper half of patch domes. Reaction product was intense surrounding most villus capillaries but, when present, was faint in dome capillary adventitia. These results indicate that most subepithelial capillaries in mouse Peyer's patch domes, unlike those in villi, generally lack endothelial fenestrae, and the dome capillary network is less permeable to some macromolecules than that of the villus.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Basement Membrane / chemistry
  • Basement Membrane / ultrastructure
  • Capillaries / ultrastructure*
  • Capillary Permeability / physiology*
  • Endothelium, Vascular / ultrastructure
  • Hemoglobins / pharmacokinetics
  • Horseradish Peroxidase
  • Immunoglobulin G
  • Intestinal Mucosa / blood supply*
  • Intestinal Mucosa / ultrastructure
  • Laminin / analysis
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Peyer's Patches / blood supply*
  • Peyer's Patches / immunology
  • Peyer's Patches / ultrastructure


  • Hemoglobins
  • Immunoglobulin G
  • Laminin
  • Horseradish Peroxidase