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The development of the ultimo-branchial body in the frog Pseudacris nigrita triseriata

, : The development of the ultimo-branchial body in the frog Pseudacris nigrita triseriata. Trans Amer Micros Cop Soc 83(3): 330-337

The ultimobranchial bodies of 67 specimens of the frog, Pseudacris nigrita triseriata in various stages of development were examined histologically and histo-chemically. These structures arose from the pharyngeal floor at the level of the 6th pouch at Shumway stage 24 and possessed cells which contained basophilic cytoplasm and glycoproteins during the period of differentiation. Increase in size of the structure was generally confined to the post-metamorphic phase. During incipient metamorphosis, the follicular epithelium became slightly pseudostratified and occasional extruded nuclei were found within the lumen. Secretory products were not found in these ductless bodies until climactic metamorphorsis, at which time mucoproteins and acid mucopolysaccharides were detectable. Adult structures also contained neutral mucopolysaccharides. Parafollicular cells were present only during climactic metamorphosis and appeared to contribute to the formation of the follicular epithelia. Extruded nuclei and secretions similar to those of goblet cells indicated a holocrine activity. The epithelia of the ultimobranchial bodies acquired basement membranes, became pseudostratified and vascularization was pronounced during climactic metamorphosis, indicating a possible unknown endocrine activity. The presence of paired, actively secreting ultimobranchial bodies during climactic metamorphosis suggests its role in this phase, since urodeles, which possess a single gland of reduced activity, do not complete metamorphosis.

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