A probabilistic model of mosaicism based on the histological analysis of chimaeric rat liver

P. M. Iannaccone, W. C. Weinberg, L. Berkwits

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

37 Scopus citations


The analysis of pattern development in mosaic and chimaeric animals has provided insight into a number of developmental problems. In order to aid the understanding of the dynamics of the development of mosaic tissues, a computer simulation of the generation of a mosaic tissue was created using simple probabilistic decisions. Results of quantitative analysis of the simulated mosaicism were compared with chimaeric liver. Chimaeric animals were produced by morula aggregation between histologically distinguishable strains of congenic rats. The livers of these animals revealed a pattern of patchy mosaicism unrelated to either acinar or lobular architecture of the organ. Independent quantifiable parameters were correlated and compared between the simulation and chimaeric liver tissue. This analysis showed that extensive cell migration is not required to develop finely variegated mosaic tissue and that the patterns of mosaicism observed could have resulted from tissue development in which as few as three reiterated decisions were required. First, the stimulation established anlagen of two cell types of various specified proportions with randomly chosen placement. Second, in each generation of the simulation the order in which the cells divided was established randomly. Third, there was a random choice of the direction of placement of the daughter cell. The quantitative relationships between the proportion of cell types, the area of patches and the number of patches per unit area was consistent between the simulation and the chimaeric tissue.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)187-196
Number of pages10
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1987

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Developmental Biology


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