Electron microscopic immunogold localization of salivary mucin MUC5B in human buccal and palatal glands
In recent years, minor salivary glands, due to their involvement in the health and homeostasis of the oral cavity, have been the focus of several research investigations. Despite the fact that a considerable amount of data has been collected, many aspects of their functional features, including the secretory components they produce, remain to be ascertained. In this study we have analyzed the ultrastructural distribution of the MUC5B mucin in human palatal and buccal glands by means of post-embedding immunoelectron microscopy.Thin sections of normal human buccal and palatal glands obtained at surgery, were treated with polyclonal antibodies to human salivary MUC5B. Intense MUC5B reactivity was observed in the secretory granules of mucous cells of all glands examined. The present results provide new data regarding the secretory pattern of MUC5B in human buccal and palatal glands, indicating their significant contribution to the maintenance of the mucous biofilm that protects buccal and palatal mucosal areas.