University of Surrey

Test tubes in the lab Research in the ATI Dance Research

Altered distribution of interstitial cells and innervation in the rat urinary bladder following spinal cord injury.

Johnston, L, Cunningham, RM, Young, JS, Fry, CH, McMurray, G, Eccles, R and McCloskey, KD (2011) Altered distribution of interstitial cells and innervation in the rat urinary bladder following spinal cord injury. Journal of Cellular and Molecular Medicine, 16 (7). pp. 1533-1543.

Text (licence)

Download (33kB)
Available under License : See the attached licence file.

Download (2MB)


Introduction Changes in the distribution of interstitial cells (IC) are reportedly associated with dysfunctional bladder. The present study investigated whether spinal cord injury (SCI) resulted in changes to IC subpopulations (vimentin-positive with the ultrastructural profile of IC), smooth muscle and nerves within the bladder wall and correlated cellular remodelling with functional properties. Methods Bladders from SCI (T8/9 transection) and sham-operated rats five-weeks post-injury were used for ex vivo pressure-volume experiments or processed for morphological analysis with transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and light/confocal microscopy. Results Pressure-volume relationships revealed low-pressure, hypercompliance in SCI bladders indicative of decompensation. Extensive networks of vimentin-positive IC were typical in sham lamina propria and detrusor but were markedly reduced post-SCI; semi-quantitative analysis showed significant reduction. Nerves labelled with anti-neurofilament and anti-vAChT were notably decreased post-SCI. TEM revealed lamina propria IC and detrusor IC which formed close synaptic-like contacts with vesicle-containing nerve varicosities in shams. Lamina propria and detrusor IC were ultrastructurally damaged post-SCI with retracted/lost cell processes and were adjacent to areas of cellular debris and neuronal degradation. Smooth muscle hypertrophy was common to SCI tissues. Conclusions IC populations in bladder wall were decreased five weeks post-SCI, accompanied with reduced innervation, smooth muscle hypertrophy and increased compliance. These novel findings indicate that bladder wall remodelling post-SCI affects the integrity of interactions between smooth muscle, nerves and IC, with compromised IC populations. Correlation between IC reduction and a hypercompliant phenotype suggests that disruption to bladder IC contribute to pathophysiological processes underpinning the dysfunctional SCI bladder.

Item Type: Article
Divisions : Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences > School of Biosciences and Medicine > Department of Biochemical Sciences
Authors :
Johnston, L
Cunningham, RM
Young, JS
Fry, CH
McMurray, G
Eccles, R
McCloskey, KD
Date : 2011
DOI : 10.1111/j.1582-4934.2011.01410.x
Additional Information : This article was published in the Journal of Cellular and Molecular Medicine (© The authors/Foundation for Cellular and Molecular Medicine). The definitive version is available at
Depositing User : Symplectic Elements
Date Deposited : 22 Jun 2012 11:57
Last Modified : 31 Oct 2017 14:31

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item


Downloads per month over past year

Information about this web site

© The University of Surrey, Guildford, Surrey, GU2 7XH, United Kingdom.
+44 (0)1483 300800