The electron microscopic appearances of chylomicra and lipoproteins have been investigated. The particles were isolated from rat chyle by differential flotation in an ultracentrifuge. Various fixing and embedding media were used. The two kinds of particles were then identified in thin sections of the jejunum of rats. The chylomicra had diameters of from 1,000 A to 1 µ; the lipoproteins ranged from 100 to 1,000 A. They were identified by their sizes and their similarities to the isolated particles after the various fixing and embedding procedures. In addition, the relative amounts of the two kinds of particle varied greatly under different dietary conditions. The chylomicra had a thin rim, probably of phospholipid. Section B records the passage of the two kinds of particle into the lacteals in the villi of the jejunum. Both chylomicra and lipoproteins were seen passing through many open junctions. From permeability considerations it would seem that this is the most important route. These open junctions appear to act as "inlet valves" which prevent backflow as the contractions of the villi pump material out of the lacteals. Both chylomicra and lipoproteins were also seen entering the endothelial cells and lying inside them. The lipoproteins entered via "normal" caveolae and were seen in "normal" vesicles (∼500 A); the chylomicra necessarily occupied much larger organelles. Both kinds of particles were also seen in caveolae on the luminal surface of the endothelium, but it was impossible to be certain that these were not just particles entering the cells from the lumen. The chylomicra often seemed to be washed out of these caveolae as many large, empty ones were seen on the luminal sides of the cells. Frequently, these caveolae had dark membranes.

This content is only available as a PDF.