An x-ray study of the condensed and separated states of sciatic nerve myelin.
Low-angle X-ray diffraction patterns of peripheral nerve myelin after modification by either rehydration in various solutions or by chemical treatment have been recorded. These X-ray patterns and the previously reported modified nerve myelin patterns demonstrate that nerve myelin has at least five different states: the normal state, condensed state I and II and separated state I and II. There are two membranes per unit cell in the normal state and in states II whereas there is one membrane per unit cell in states I. Under certain conditions normal nerve can go reversibly into either of states II. With continued treatment the nerve myelin structure moves irreversibly from state II to state I and, once in state I, the nerve myelin layers cannot return to the normal state. Our results demonstrate that there is a reversible transformation between condensed state I and separated state I. Fourier profiles of nerve myelin in the normal state, condensed state I and separated state I are presented.
Worthington, CR; McIntosh, TJ
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