Functional morphology of Helix pomatia salivary gland cells was studied at light microscopic level by using different histochemical methods. Three cell types could be demonstrated in the salivary gland: mucocytes, granular and vacuolated cells. The distribution and the number of the different cell types were different in active and inactive snails. In active feeding animals, dilatated interlobular salivary ducts were observed, which were never present in inactive ones. In active animals an additional cell type, the cystic cell could also be observed. Periodic acid Schiff staining revealed both mucuos and serous elements in the salivary gland. Furthermore, hematoxyline-eosin staining indicated the occurrence of a cell layer with high mitotic activity in the acini. Applying immunohistochemical methods with monoclonal mouse anti-human Ki-67 clone, B56 and polyclonal rabbit anti-human Ki-67 antibodies, we also were able to demonstrate the occurrence of dividing cells in the salivary gland. Analysis of 1–2 um semi-thin Araldite sections stained with toluidine-blue showed that the saliva can be released, in addition to possible exo-cytosis, by the lysis of cystic cells. Using an apoptosis kit, we could also establish that this process was due to rather an apoptotic than a necrotic mechanism. In the salivary gland of active snails, where an intensive salivation takes place, significantly more apoptotic cells occurred, if compared to that of inactive animals. It is suggested that programmed cell death may also be involved in the saliva release.
Bani, G., Formigli, L., Cecchi, R. (1990) Morphological study on the salivary glands of Eobania ver-miculata (Miiller) (Mollusca, Pulmonata). Z. mikrosk.-anat. Forsch. Leipzig. 104, 856–870.
Beltz, B., Gelperin, A. (1979) An ultrastructural analysis of the salivary system of the terrestrial mollusc, Limax maximus. Tissue and Cell 11, 31–50.
Boer, H. H., Bonga, S. E. W., van Rooyen, N. (1967) Light and electron microscopical investigations on the salivary glands of Lymnaea stagnalis L. Zeitschrift fur Zellforschung. 76, 228–247.
Charrier, Y. M. (1988) Structure des glandes salivaries d’Helix aspersa Miiller (Mollusque, Gasteropode, Pulmone). Haliotis, 18, 171–173.
Elekes, K., Ude, J. (1994) Peripheral Connections of FMRFamide-immunreactive neurons in the snail, Helixpomatia. An immunogold electronmicroscopic study. J. Neurocytology 23, 758–769.
Elekes, K. (2000) Ultrastructural aspects of peptidergic modulation in the peripoheral nervous system of Helix pomatia. Micros. Res. Tech. 49, 534–546.
Farber, E. (1994) Programmed cell death: necrosis versus apoptosis. Mod. Pathol. 7, 605–609.
Kiss, T., Hiripi, L., Papp, N., Elekes, K. (2003) Dopamine and serotonin receptors mediating contractions of the snail, Helix pomatia, salivary duct. Neuroscience 116, 755–790.
Krijgsman, B. S. (1928) Arbeitsrythmus der Verdauungsdriisen bei Helix pomatia. Z. vergl. Physiol. 8, 425–658.
Lim, C.-S., Lee, J.-C., S. D., Chang, D.-J., Kaang, B.-K. (2002) Hydrogen peroxide-induced cell death in cultured Aplysia sensory neurons. Brain Res. 941, 137–145.
Lobo-da-Cunha, A. (2001) Ultrastructural and histochemical study of the salivary glands of Aplysia depilans (Mollusca, Opisthobranchia). Acta Zoologica 82, 201–212.
Luchtel, D. L., Martin, A. W., Deyrup-Olsen, I., Boer, H. H. (1997) Gastropoda: Pulmonata. Microscopic Anatomy of Invertebrates 6B: Mollusca II, Wiley-Liss, Inc. New York.
Moreno, F. J., Pinero, J., Hidalgo, J., Navas, P., Aijon, J., Lopez-Campos, J. L. (1982) Histochemical and ultrastructural studies on the salivary glands of Helix aspersa (Mollusca). J. Zool, Lond. 196, 343–354.
Moya, J., Serrano, M. T., Angulo, E. (1992) Ultrastructure of the salivary glands oiArion ater (gastropoda, pulmonata). Biological Structures and Morphogenesis, 4, 81–87.
Pacaut, M., Vigier, P. (1906) Les glandes salivaries de l’escargot. Arch. Anat. micr. Morph. exp. 8, 425–658.
Quattrini, D. (1967) Osservazioni sulla ultrastruttura dei dotti escretori delle ghiandole salivari di Helix aspersa Miiller (Mollusca, Gastropoda, Pulmonata). Caryologia, 20, 191–206.
Serrano, T., Gomez, B. J., Angulo, E. (1996) Light and electron microscopy study of the salivary gland secretory cells of Helicoidea (Gastropoda, Stylommatophora). Tissue & Cell 28, 237–251.
Vaux, D. L., Strasser, A. (1996) The molecular biology of apoptosis. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA, 93, 2239–2244.
Walker, G. (1970) Light and electron microscope investigations on the salivary glands of the slug, Agriolimax reticulatus (Miiller). Protoplasma 71, 111–126.
Presented at the 10th ISIN Symposium on Invertebrate Neurobiology, July 5–9, 2003, Tihany, Hungary.
About this article
Cite this article
Pirger, Z., Elekes, K. & Kiss, T. Functional Morphology of the Salivary Gland of the Snail, Helix Pomatia: A Histochemical and Immunocytochemical Study. BIOLOGIA FUTURA 55, 221–232 (2004). https://doi.org/10.1556/ABiol.55.2004.1-4.27
- Salivary gland
- cystic cell
- dividing cell