THE RECOGNITION of the oligodendrocyte as a cellular unit of the neuroglial portion of the central nervous system was made by Ford Robertson, a Scottish investigator, in 1900. With the use of platinum impregnation he separated a cell type from the third element of Cajal, which he called "mesoglia." Hortega, in 1918, analyzed the third element of Cajal with the use of silver carbonate impregnation methods and discovered first the microglial cell, which he called "microglia"; in 1921 he identified the oligodendroglial cell, which he so designated because of its few dendritic processes. The mesoglial cell of Robertson was found to correspond to the oligodendroglial cell of Hortega, but the term used by the latter was retained, since it was more descriptive and avoided implication of mesodermal derivation.
Bailey and Cushing,1 in their historic classification of gliomas, published in 1926, were the first to associate the oligodendroglial cell with
EARNEST F, KERNOHAN JW, CRAIG WM. OLIGODENDROGLIOMAS: A Review of Two Hundred Cases. Arch NeurPsych. 1950;63(6):964–976. doi:10.1001/archneurpsyc.1950.02310240123008
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