Morphometric studies of the localization of the glucocorticoid receptor in mammalian cells and of glucocorticoid hormone-induced effects

G. Akner, A. C. Wikstrom, K. Mossberg, K. G. Sundqvist, J. A. Gustafsson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

23 Scopus citations

Abstract

We studied the subcellular distribution of the glucocorticoid receptor (GR) by light microscopy (LM) and confocal laser scanning microscopy (CLSM) in different mammalian cell types. The effect of added glucocorticoid hormones on GR distribution was investigated by photometric quantitation on optical sections obtained by CLSM followed by statistical analysis. In the control interphase cytoplasm, the distribution of GR was fibrillar in some and diffuse in other cell types. Fibrillar GR was distributed along cytoplasmic microtubules (MTs) with predilection for a subset of MTs. GR was also observed in the centrosomes. Nuclear GR was both diffuse and granular in distribution. During cell division, GR appeared in the mitotic apparatus at all stages of mitosis. These findings were not fixation-dependent. Glucocorticoid treatment increased both the nuclear and cytoplasmic GR signal. However, this was detectable only after precipitating but not cross- linking fixation. There was both intra- and intercellular GR heterogeneity in the absence and presence of hormone but no indication of a hormone-induced nuclear translocation of GR. We present a hypothetical model of two independent GR populations in the nucleus and cytoplasm, respectively, without any discernible ligand-induced nuclear translocation of GR. The extranuclear GR population may exert effect(s) on site in the cytoplasm without involving nuclear genomic transcription.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)645-657
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Histochemistry and Cytochemistry
Volume42
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - 1994

Keywords

  • Confocal laser scanning microscopy
  • Fixation
  • Glucocorticoid receptor
  • Heterogeneity
  • Immunocytology
  • Localization
  • Mammalian cells
  • Microtubule
  • Nuclear translocation
  • Photometry

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology
  • Anatomy

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