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Demonstration of nutrient pathway from the digestive system to oocytes in the gonad intestinal loop of the scallop Pecten maximus L


Demonstration of nutrient pathway from the digestive system to oocytes in the gonad intestinal loop of the scallop Pecten maximus L



Biological Bulletin 205(1): 83-92



ISSN/ISBN: 0006-3185

PMID: 12917225

DOI: 10.2307/1543448

The mechanism of nutrient transfer from the digestive system to the gonad acini and developing oocytes was investigated in the gonad-intestinal loop system of the queen scallop Pecten maximus L. Ferritin was injected directly into the purged intestine of specimens from the wild. Subsequently, a histochemical reaction and transmission electron microscopy were used to localize ferritin in various cell types. Ferritin was rapidly absorbed by the intestinal epithelium, and then appeared in hemocytes in the surrounding connective tissue. In the hemocytes, ferritin was stored in variously sized inclusions, as well as in the general cytoplasm. In all sections examined for the 12 experimental individuals, hemocytes were always found in association with connective tissue fibers extending from the base of the intestinal epithelium to gonad acini. After 30-min incubation, ferritin appeared inside the acini of all individuals. Ferritin-bearing cells were rarely found in association with male acini or gametes, nor with mature female gametes, but often with developing female gametes. Not all individuals showed the same temporal dynamics of ferritin transport, suggesting that nutrient transfer to oocytes is either not a continuous process, or that among individuals, transfer is not synchronized on short time scales. This is the first demonstration of a pathway of nutrient transfer from the intestine, and more generally the digestive system, to developing oocytes in the Bivalvia.

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Accession: 003702568

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