The parathyroid glands of young rats were radioautographed after a single injection of the protein precursor tyrosine-3H in the hope of identifying the sites of synthesis and migration of newly formed protein in the gland cells. The same procedure was used after injection of the glycoprotein precursor galactose-3H. As early as 2 min after intravenous injection of tyrosine-3H, the label was mainly found in the rough endoplasmic reticulum suggesting that cisternal ribosomes are sites of protein synthesis. By 5 and 10 min, much of the label had migrated from the rough endoplasmic reticulum into the Golgi apparatus. By 20 and 30 min, some label had migrated from there into secretory granules. By 45 min and 1 hr, the label content of the cell had decreased, indicating release of labeled material outside the cell. At 2 min after intravenous injection of galactose-3H, the label was mainly present in the Golgi apparatus, where presumably galactose is taken up into glycoprotein. By 10 min, some label appeared in secretion granules and by 30 min release of the material to the outside of the cell was under way. In conclusion, it is likely that the tyrosine-labeled protein material consists mainly of the parathyroid hormone. The galactose-labeled carbohydrate material would be either associated with the hormone in the cell or be part of a distinct glycoprotein which may be the one present on the outer surface of the plasma membrane (cell coat).

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