Evidence for a neuroimmunomodulatory and a hematopoietic role of the Luschka's coccygeal body(3).

  Vol. 21 (5) 2000 Neuro endocrinology letters Journal Article   2000; 21(5): 391-403 PubMed PMID:  11452233    Citation

: OBJECTIVES: In humans the glomus coccygeus was described in 1860 by Luschka. It is present at the coccyx tip and corresponds to a complex anastomosis between the median sacral artery and vein, and it is innervated by sympathetic fibers. In rats and mice it has been located in the tail ventral face. Its function is not known. According to our previous work, which demonstrated that hematopoiesis is under a noradrenergic control and based on the presence of epithelioid cells and sympathetic innervation, we assumed that the coccygeal gland might influence hematopoiesis via neuroendocrine or neural mechanisms. Therefore, the present study was undertaken to analyze the effect of glomus coccygeus on hematopoiesis. MATERIAL AND METHODS: Peripheral blood leukocyte and platelet concentrations as well as body temperature (BT) and body weight (BW), and norepinephrine (NE), adrenaline (A) and dopamine (DA) content in bone marrow of Luschkaectomized (LCGx), Sham LCGx operated (ShLCGx) and normal mice (Co) were investigated. RESULTS: We found that in LCGx vs. ShLCGx and Co, platelets and neutrophils increased while lymphocytes decreased. The effect of LCGx was significant from day 0 until day 65. Total leukocytes, monocytes, granulocytes, eosinophils and BT did not show any variation. Moreover, 22 days after the operation the amount of NE, A and DA seemed to be decreased in LCGx vs. ShLCGx while the difference was less evident between ShLCGx vs. Co. CONCLUSIONS: This study suggests for the first time a possible hematopoietic function and an immunomodulatory activity of the "Luschka's body" or Coccygeal body by a modulation of the sympathetic nervous system.

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