The in vivo effects of 3-amino-1,2,4-triazole (AT) on the fine structure of microbodies in hepatic cells of male rats has been studied by the peroxidase-staining technique. Within 1 hr of intraperitoneal injection AT abolishes microbody peroxidase-staining, and the return of staining coincides temporally with the known pattern of return of catalase activity following AT inhibition; this is further evidence that the peroxidase staining of microbodies is due to catalase activity. Peroxidase staining reappears in the microbody matrix without evidence of either massive degradation or rapid proliferation of the organelles. Furthermore, during the period of return of activity, ribosomal staining occurs adjacent to microbodies whose matrix shows little or no peroxidase staining. These observations are interpreted as evidence that (a) catalase is capable of entering preexisting microbodies without traversing the cisternae of the rough endoplasmic reticulum or the Golgi apparatus, and that (b) the ribosomal staining is probably not cytochemical diffusion artifact and may represent a localized site of synthesis or activation of catalase.

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