Table 4

Summary of ganglia and cell bodies stained by antibodies for HuC/D, ChAT and nNOS per millimetre myenteric plexus in different regions of colon from patients of different age groups

Numbers per mm of myenteric plexusAge group and region of colon
(n=patients studied)
Adult ascending
Elderly ascending
Adult descending
Elderly descending
HuC/D ganglia/mm1.4±0.11.7±0.22.1±0.2*2.0±0.1
HuC/D neurons/mm7.0±0.910.2±0.922.9 ± 5.5*†15.7±1.5
ChAT neurons/mm2.4±0.35.0±0.6‡5.2±0.8§4.9±0.8
nNOS neurons/mm3.8±0.45.3±0.86.6±0.86.2±0.8
  • The data are expressed as means±SEM. Differences between the two age groups and regions of colon were analysed using analysis of variance with Sidak’s multiple comparison tests.

  • *P<0.01 (between regions).

  • †Note the existence of an outlier observation among the HuC/D measurements (neurons/mm) in adult descending colon, which could not be excluded (see figure 3).

  • ‡P<0.05 (between age groups).

  • §P<0.05 (between regions).

  • ChAT, choline acetyltransferase; HuC/D, human neuronal protein C/D; nNOS, neuronal nitric oxide synthase.