Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Biomedical Sciences


Thirty-nine rabbits (Oryctoloous cuniculus) weighing 2.0 to 3.0 kilograms were used in this investigation. Spleen slides from 14 animals were processed to show (1) the presence of non-specific esterase according to the method of Pearce, (2) the presence of acid phosphatase by the method of Burstone, (3) the metalophil reaction according to the short method of marshall, (4) the histological features by routine hematoxylin and eosin staining, and (5) the presence of hemosiderin iron by the method of Gomori. Twenty-five animals were divided into 3 groups which received injection by posterior marginal ear vein, eleven animals received 10 cc per kilogram of 5% India ink; 6 animals received 5 cc per kilo of 2% chlorazol black E; and 8 animals received 5 cc per kilo of 25% saccharated oxide of iron. Animals were sacrificed at intervals from 15 minutes to 8 days following injection, and sections were prepared to show the cells which had phagocytossd these injectates.

Strong non-specific esterase activity was found in free cells in sinus lumens (probably monocytes), large cells of the pulp cords, cells in germinal centers and marginal rims of the lymphoid nodules, and scattered cells in the marginal zone. A moderately strong reaction was shown in the lining cells of the sinuses, a feature found in the rabbit but not in the white rat. The acid phosphatase reaction was present in the same calls as above with the exception of the sinus lining cells. The metalophil reaction exactly paralleled the reaction for non-specific esterase.

The injectates were phagocytosed by the same cells which showed non-specific esterase activity and which gave the metalophil reaction with the exception of those of the lymphoid sheaths. It is concluded that these latter cells were not exposed to the particulate matter because of the nature of the vascular supply to this region.

It is suggested that the lack of acid phosphatase in the sinus lining cells is possibly due to their immaturity.