Ultrastructure of microfilament bundles in baby hamster kidney (BHK-21) cells. The use of tannic acid

R. D. Goldman, B. Chojnacki, M. J. Yerna

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

52 Scopus citations


After standard glutaraldehyde-osmium tetroxide fixation procedures, the majority of microfilament bundles in BHK-21 cells exhibit relatively uniform electron density along their long axes. The inclusion of tannic acid in the glutaraldehyde fixation solution results in obvious electron density shifts along the majority of microfilament bundles. Striated patterns are frequently observed which consist of regularly spaced electron dense (D) and electron lucid (L) bands. A striated pattern is also observed along many BHK-21 stress fibers after processing for indirect immunofluorescence utilizing BHK-21 myosin antiserum. A direct correlation of these periodicities seen by the light and electron microscope techniques is impossible at the present time. However, comparative measurements indicate that the overall patterns seen in the immunofluorescence and electron microscope preparations are similar. The ultrastructural results provide an initial clue for the ultimate determination of the supramolecular organization of contractile proteins other than actin within the microfilament bundles on non-muscle cells.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)759-766
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Cell Biology
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1979

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology


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