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Dendritic transport. I. Colchicine stimulates the transport of lysosomal enzymes from cell bodies to dendrites


Injection of colchicine into the lateral cerebral ventricle of the rat was found to induce a paradoxical translocation of two lysosomal enzymes, dipeptidyl peptidase II (Dpp II) and acid phosphatase, from the soma of neurons to the dendrites. Following a single injection of colchicine, neuronal somata, which normally contain the bulk of these lysosomal enzymatic activities, become depleted of these enzymes, whereas dendrites become abnormally enriched. All neurons which contained these enzymes, except those of the mesencephalic nucleus of the trigeminal nerve, displayed this phenomenon. Lysosomal enzyme translocation into dendrites was observed in the mitral cell layer within 1 hr after a colchicine injection and could be induced in most neuronal populations by injections of colchicine as low as 25 micrograms. Five days after a 100-micrograms colchicine injection, a normal pattern of enzyme distribution was observed, indicating that the effect of colchicine was reversible. Enzyme translocation was not accompanied by gross changes in cell morphology, nor did it result in the specific loss of neuronal cell bodies which contained these enzymes. The results indicate that colchicine, under conditions known to inhibit axoplasmic transport, stimulates the transport of lysosomal enzymes from the cell body to the dendrites.

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