MIP-immunoreactive innervation of the snail, Helix pomatia, heart. An ultrastructural study

K. Elekes, T. Nagy, Zsuzsanna N. Fekete

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The ultrastructural characteristics of the innervation established by MIP-(Mytilus inhibitory peptide) immunoreactive neurons was investigated in the heart of the snail, Helix pomatia, applying correlative light- and electron microscopic pre-embedding immunocytochemistry on Vibratome-slices. In both the auricle and ventricle, the muscle fibers receive a rich innervation by MIP-immunoreactive (IR) varicose fibers. However, the innervation is seasonally changing in the two parts of the heart. The varicosities, containing a morphologically uniform population of large (120-150 nm) electron-dense granules, can be found in three different positions in relation to the muscle fibers: (i) close (15-20 nm) but unspecialized membrane connections between MIP-(IR) varicosities and muscle fibers; (ii) MIP-IR varicosities located relatively far (0.5-several μm) from the muscles fibers; (iii) MIP-IR profiles localized freely in the extracellular space among the loosely arranged muscle fibers. A general modulatory role of MIP in regulating the heart activity of Helix is suggested.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)55-64
Number of pages10
JournalActa biologica Hungarica
Issue number1-3
Publication statusPublished - Nov 10 1999



  • Electron microscopic immunocytochemistry
  • Heart
  • Mytilus inhibitory peptide
  • Neuromuscular contacts
  • Snail, Helix pomatia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Neurology

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