Nucleolar organizer regions of megakaryocytes in chronic myeloproliferative disorders

András Matolcsy, Roland Nádor, Edit Wéber, Tibor Kónya

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To study megakaryocyte activation, the argyrophilic staining method of nucleolar organizer regions (AgNOR) has been applied to decalcified bone marrow biopsies of 16 individuals with no haematopoietic disorders and 59 patients with chronic myeloproliferative disease. Of the 59 patients, 18 had chronic myeloid leukaemia (CML), 21 chronic megakaryocytic granulocytic myelosis (CMGM), 13 polycythaemia vera (PV) and 7 essential thrombocythaemia (ET). The AgNOR number of megakaryocytes in CML was significantly lower, and in CMGM, PV and ET significantly higher than in healthy individuals. The high number and the clusters of fine-grained AgNORs of megakaryocytes in CMGM, PV and ET are suggestive of active, proliferating cells. The AgNOR number of megakaryocytes and the platelet counts of the patients did not show a convincing correlation. In CMGM, PV and ET the pyknotic, heterochromatinized megakaryocytes with narrow rims of cytoplasm called bare (nude) nuclei, possessed few, large AgNOR granules. The AgNOR staining of bare nuclei and the roughly identical number of granules found in CMGM, PV and ET indicate a common, active mechanism of apoptosis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)441-445
Number of pages5
JournalVirchows Archiv A Pathological Anatomy and Histopathology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Sep 1 1992


  • Chronic myeloproliferative disease
  • Megakaryocyte
  • Nucleolar organizer region

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine

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