Temporal and spatial localization of type I and II collagens in human thyroid cartilage

Horst Claassen, Thorsten Kirsch

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Thyroid cartilages of various ages were investigated by immunofluorescence staining for localization of the fibrillar collagen types I and II in order to understand the tissue remodeling occurring during the mineralization and ossification of thyroid cartilage. In fetal and juvenile thyroid cartilages, type I collagen was restricted to the inner and outer perichondrium, while type II collagen was localized in the matrix of hyaline cartilage. However, in advanced ages, type I collagen was also localized in the pericellular and in the interterritorial matrix of intermediate and central chondrocytes of thyroid cartilage. The matrix of peripheral chondrocytes was negative for type I collagen. This suggests that some chondrocytes in thyroid cartilage undergo a differentiation to type I collagen-producing chondrocytes. At the beginning of ossification, bone-related type I collagen was chiefly detected in the central cartilage layer, but was never deposited first from the perichondrium in the direction to the subperichondrial cartilage. This observation confirmed previous findings showing that osteogenesis mainly follows an endochondral ossification pattern. Interterritorial matrix failed to react with the type II collagen antibody in men from the beginning of the third decade, and later still in women, even after treatment with hyaluronidase. These observations indicate that major matrix changes occur faster in male than in female thyroid cartilage.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)237-242
Number of pages6
JournalAnatomy and Embryology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1994


  • Collagens
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Mineralization
  • Ossification
  • Thyroid cartilage

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anatomy
  • Embryology
  • Developmental Biology
  • Cell Biology


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