In one of the current histochemical methods for dehydrogenases and diaphorases the final product is a metal-formazan dye derived from reduction of an N-thiazolyl-substituted tetrazolium. Sites of enzymic activity consistently appear as intramitochondrial dots 0.2 to 0.3 µ in diameter. When applied to active particles from disrupted mitochondria (Keilin-Hartree preparation, electron transport particle, Cooper-Lehninger particle) the individual particles appear as black dots 0.1 to 0.3 µ in diameter. It is clear that formazan is deposited progressively upon the particles and the results suggest that the latter may be spatially arranged in mitochondria so that areas of activity are separated by quiescent regions.
A Cytochemical Study of the Dehydrogenases of Mitochondria and Mitochondrial Particulates by a Monotetrazolium-Cobalt Chelation Method
A. G. E. Pearse, D. G. Scarpelli, R. Hess; A Cytochemical Study of the Dehydrogenases of Mitochondria and Mitochondrial Particulates by a Monotetrazolium-Cobalt Chelation Method . J Biophys and Biochem Cytol 1 April 1960; 7 (2): 243–249. doi: https://doi.org/10.1083/jcb.7.2.243
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