The present investigation was undertaken to determine if some of the components of exfoliation material in iris tissue were unique to exfoliation or were part of normal iris architecture. Eleven normal iris specimens and 10 exfoliative iris specimens were processed for cryoultramicrotomy and London resin white embedding. Immunogold electron microscopy was used to investigate the fine structural distribution of amyloid P component, elastin, entactin, fibronectin, gp115, and vitronectin in normal iris and their association with exfoliation material. Exfoliation material was positive for amyloid P component and possibly gp115, neither of which were present in normal iris tissue. Elastin and fibronectin were present in the normal iris stroma but were not associated with exfoliation material. The distribution of amyloid P component in the vessel lumen and wall led to the conclusion that amyloid P is a serum contaminant. The presence of gp115 in exfoliation material represents the synthesis of a component novel to the iris vascular cell synthetic repertoire.
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