Intraganglionic macrophages: a new population of cells in the enteric ganglia

David Dora, Emily Arciero, Ryo Hotta, Csilla Barad, Sukhada Bhave, Tamas Kovacs, Adam Balic, Allan M Goldstein, Nandor Nagy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

The enteric nervous system (ENS) shares embryological, morphological, neurochemical, and functional features with the CNS. In addition to neurons and glia, the CNS includes a third component, microglia, which are functionally and immunophenotypically similar to macrophages, but a similar cell type has not previously been identified in enteric ganglia. In this study we identify a population of macrophages in the enteric ganglia, intermingling with the neurons and glia. These intraganglionic macrophages (IMs) are highly ramified and express the hematopoietic marker CD45, MHC class II antigen, and chB6, a marker specific for B cells and microglia in avians. These IMs do not express antigens typically associated with T cells or dendritic cells. The CD45+/ChB6+/MHCII+ signature supports a hematopoietic origin and this was confirmed using intestinal chimeras in GFP-transgenic chick embryos. The presence of GFP+/CD45+ cells in the intestinal graft’s ENS confirms that IMs residing within enteric ganglia have a hematopoietic origin. IMs are also found in the ganglia of CSF1RGFP chicken and CX3CR1GFP mice. Based on the expression pattern and location of IMs in avians and rodents, we conclude that they represent a novel non-neural crest-derived microglia-like cell population within the enteric ganglia
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)401-410
JournalJournal of Anatomy
Issue number4
Early online date18 Jul 2018
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2018

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • CSF1R
  • CX3CR1
  • enteric ganglia
  • enteric nervous system
  • macrophages
  • microglia


Dive into the research topics of 'Intraganglionic macrophages: a new population of cells in the enteric ganglia'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this