This paper describes electron microscopic studies of developing connective tissue in granulomata induced by the subcutaneous injection of carrageenin into guinea pigs. Seven days after injection the granulomata contained many fibroblasts and exhibited rapid production of collagen. The fibroblasts were characterised by an extensively developed endoplasmic reticulum and showed numbers of fine, unstriated filaments in the outer regions of the cytoplasm. The filaments, about 50 A in diameter, tended to lie parallel to and closely adjacent to the cell boundary. The cytoplasmic membrane was frequently ill defined or disrupted, particularly bordering regions in which filaments occurred. In longitudinal sections of extended cell processes, filaments were abundant and, in some instances, the cytoplasmic membrane was barely detectable. In the extracellular space striated collagen fibrils were usually accompanied by filaments, 50 to 100 A in diameter, and these often exhibited the characteristic periodicity of collagen, particularly after intense electron bombardment. Much cellular debris was present in the extracellular space. These observations have led to the suggestion that connective tissue precursors are released from fibroblasts by the disintegration or dissolution of the cytoplasmic membrane and the shedding of cytoplasmic material, as in the apocrine gland cells. In some instances this release may take the form of the elongation from the cell of extended processes; disintegration of the cytoplasmic membrane surrounding these processes then leaves the contents in the extracellular phase.

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