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Acquisition of cnidocysts and differentiation of pseudocolloblasts in larvae and adults of 2 ctenophora of the genus haeckelia carus 1863



Acquisition of cnidocysts and differentiation of pseudocolloblasts in larvae and adults of 2 ctenophora of the genus haeckelia carus 1863



Canadian Journal of Zoology 67(9): 2169-2179



The development of two species of cydippid Ctenophora, Haeckelia rubra and Haeckelia bimaculata, was studied to determine the origin and acquisition of exogenous cnidocysts in these two species, which lack colloblasts. A new type of cell, the pseudocolloblasts, is described. In H. rubra, the outer layer of the egg contains cnidocysts which are ingested by the larva after gastrulation; these cnidocysts make up the initial stock of exogenous cnidocysts that will allow the ctenophore to catch its first Cnidaria. In H. bimaculata, the outer layer of the egg is devoid of cnidocysts. The hatching larva has no cnidocysts either, but its tentacles are lined by an hitherto unknown type of glandular cell that we have named the pseudocolloblast. Pseudocolloblasts are composed of a secretory head bearing regularly interspaced, striated structures and an anchoring stalk. They eject their content progressively during successive phases of exocytosis. Pseudocolloblasts differ morphologically from real colloblasts, but they probably have the same function and they allow larvae of H. bimaculata to catch cnidarian larvae and thus acquire the exogenous cnidocysts present in postlarval and adult stages. Cnidocysts are identical in both species of Haeckelia in the Mediterranean Sea, consisting of macroisorhizas and microisorhizas in which the intracapsular filament has five circumferential pleats, a character typical of Narcomedusae. They differ in size from the cnidocysts found in H. rubra in the Pacific and in the Sea of Japan.

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Acquisition de cnidocystes et differenciation de pseudocolloblastes chez les larves et les adultes de deux ctenophores du genre Haeckelia Carus, 1863. Canadian Journal of Zoology 679: 2169-2179, 1989

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