Fibronectin (FN) has been localized in the rat glomerulus using indirect immunolabeling. It was demonstrated in frozen sections by immunofluorescence, in sections of fixed kidneys by both peroxidase and ferritin-labeled antibodies, and in isolated glomerular basement membranes (GBM) with ferritin-labeled antibodies. Complementary and convergent results were obtained with these approaches. FN was most abundant in the mesangial matrix where it was especially concentrated at the interface between the endothelial and mesangial cells. In the peripheral capillary loop, FN was also detected in the laminae rarae (interna and externa) of the GBM--i.e., between the endothelial and epithelial cells, respectively, and the GBM. These findings indicate that FN is an important constituent of the glomerulus, and they are compatible with the assumption that, in the glomerulus, as in cultured cells, FN is involved in cell-to-cell (mesangial-mesangial, mesangial-endothelial) and cell-to-substrate (mesangial cell-mesangial matrix, epithelium-GBM, endothelium-GBM) attachment.

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