Morphology and Aging of the Human Adult Pancreas: An Electron Microscopic Study


Pancreas gets affected by fibrosis associated with aging. This study analyzed the age-related fibrotic changes in the exocrine as well as endocrine system of the pancreas. After obtaining necessary ethical clearances 30 post-natal and adult pancreases were collected and processed to obtain resin-embedded sections for transmission electron microscopy and paraffin-embedded sections for H and E staining and light microscopy. The sections were analyzed qualitatively and quantitatively. It was observed with ageing, the ductal epithelial cytoplasm contained many lipoid bodies. The basal lamina and the connective tissue around ducts increased. Periductal fibrosis appeared during fourth decade in Indian population whereas it appears sixth decade in Europeans. There was a direct correlation between area of the ducts and increasing age. Stellate cells and centroacinar cells increased with aging. The cytoplasmic processes of the centroacinar cells covered the acini and ductal epithelial cells, indicating their important function. The centroacinar cells have a regulatory role in secretory process during normal and pathological conditions. Increased fibrosis was noted in and around the islets of Langerhans. Epithelial hyperplasia, papillary projections, and periductal fibrosis around small and medium sized duct started very early in Indian populations indicating the vulnerability to pancreatic diseases in the Indian population in early ages.

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Stellate cells Zymogen granules Islets of Langerhans Fibrosis Nucleator Transmission electron microscopy

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Gupta R, Ashish Kumar N. Morphology and Aging of the Human Adult Pancreas: An Electron Microscopic Study. Acta Med Iran. 2018;56(2):106-112.