Authors: NR Grande ( ) , C Moreira de Sa ( ) , AP Aguas ( ) , E Carvalho ( ) , M Soares ( )
We sprayed a tungsten powder (CaWO4) into the airway of a single lobe (left apical) of the dog lung in order to study: (a) the kinetics of particle translocation from the bronchoalveolar lining to hilar lymph nodes, and (b) the sorting in lung lymph nodes of inhaled microcrystals. We found that the transport of the tungsten particles to the regional lymph node takes at least 24 hours and reaches its peak at day 7. In situ detection of tungsten by elemental particle analysis of lymph node sections by scanning electron microscopy allowed precise mapping of the marker in the node; the method was complemented by light microscopy and thin-section electron microscopy of the same nodes. Virtually all of the lymph node tungsten was located inside macrophages. The first tungsten-positive macrophages seen in the regional lymph nodes (day 1 to day 3) were restricted to the subcapsular space. This was followed by massive filling of the same sinus and of the narrow interfollicular areas by the particle-laden macrophages (day 3 to day 7). The even distribution of the tungsten-bearing phagocytes found in these anatomical regions of the node indicated that the subcapsular area in the dog was a continuous domain rather than the segmented region observed in nodes of common laboratory animals such as the rat. By day 7 after tungsten instillation, a moderate number of tungsten-positive macrophages was also detected in the paracortical region of the node. Finally, the presence of tungsten-bearing macrophages was extended to the outer lymph node medulla (day 7 to day 14); here, the macrophages were located in association with cords of plasmacytes and showed interdigitations with these lymphocytes. Only minimal amounts of tungsten were detected inside lymphoid follicles in association with dendritic cells. Some of the tungsten initially deposited in the airway of the apical left lung lobe was detected in contralateral hilar lymph nodes.
We conclude that: (i) particle translocation from the alveolus to regional lymph nodes is a slow process that is mediated by pulmonary macrophages, in agreement with the findings of Harmsen et al Science 230:1277, 1985); (ii) in the lymph node, particle-bearing macrophages are sorted through narrow interfollicular sinuses into the outer medulla where they interact extensively with plasma cells; (iii) the migrating macrophages cannot penetrate the follicular domains of the node; minute quantities of exogenous particles may, nevertheless, be transferred from macrophages to follicular dendritic cells; and (iv) contralateral drainage may be a feature of the lymphatic system in the lung.
How to Cite: Grande, N. , Moreira de Sa, C. , Aguas, A. , Carvalho, E. & Soares, M. (1990) “THE COURSE AND DISTRIBUTION OF TUNGTEN-LADEN MACROPHAGES IN THE HILAR LYMPH NODES OF THE DOG LUNG AFTER EXPERIMENTAL INSTILLATION OF CALCIUM TUNGSTATE INTO THE LEFT APICAL BRONCHUS”, Lymphology. 23(4).