Lamellar and «club-shaped» corpuscular nerve endings in human gingival mucosa. A light and electron microscopic study

P Narducci, M Zweyer, R Bareggi, M.A Sandrucci, G Baldini, V Grill

Abstract


A study on the presence of corpuscular nerve endings in human gingival mucosa was performed using both light and transmission electron microscopic (TEM) techniques. Both round and oval lamellar corpuscles were detected by light microscopy. They were located either subepithelially, close to the basement membrane, or within the papillae, deeply invaginated into the overlying epithelium. TEM techniques showed convoluted structures with unmyelinated fibre arborizations leading to an afferent fibre supported by the so called lamellar cells. The presence of blood vessels, collagenous fibrils, desmosome-like junctions, cytoplasmic organelles, as well as the similarity with some previously described mechanoreceptors, suggested the role of such corpuscular nerve endings in transmitting a nervous impulse induced by mechanical stimulation. Other simpler structures were also observed and named «club-shaped» corpuscles: they could support the more complex ones in responding to the strengths and the movements directly influencing the gingival mucosa.


Keywords


human gingival mucosa; corpuscular nerve endings; histology; TEM

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