, Volume 112, Issue 2, pp 517-528
Date: 07 Oct 2012

Topography and ultrastructure of the tegument of Deropristis inflata Molin, 1859 (Digenea: Deropristidae), a parasite of the European eel Anguilla anguilla (Osteichthyes: Anguillidae)

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The tegumental ultrastructure of the intestine fluke Deropristis inflata was studied using scanning and transmission electron microscopy. The surface of the tegument was covered by transverse cytoplasmic ridges from which protrude numerous thorn-like spines showing crenelated tips on the posterior part. Spines were arranged in staggered rows. Cobblestone-like units of the tegument were observed on a semicircle-shaped formation over the oral sucker. A tegumental excrescence was observed in the dorsal anterior side of the fluke. Ultrastructural study revealed that the tegument of D. inflata had a typical syncytial organization with a distal cytoplasm lying over a basal matrix and cytons. Cytoplasmic bridges allowed transit of secretory vesicles and granules packed in gland cells. Two types of sensory structures were examined. Type 1 sensory receptor was a button-like uniciliated papilla mounted on a folded tegumental base and surrounded by cytoplasmic ridges. This receptor consisted of a nerve bulb and a cilium that extended from a centriole. Type 2 sensory receptor was a smooth bulb-like non-ciliated papilla. It was only recovered on the ventral sucker. This receptor consisted of a nerve bulb enclosing an ovoid electron-dense structure. For both receptors, the nerve bulbs contained numerous mitochondria, nerve fibers, and electron-lucent material. Particular distributions of the sensory receptors were observed with a concentration on the anterior third of the body around the oral and ventral suckers. Diagrams were made to help in understanding the nature of these structures.