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Acanthella

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The name acanthella (Figs. 1 and 2) has been attributed to the Acanthocephalan stage between the acanthor and the larva that is infective to the final (or paratenic) host (Cystacanth, Acanthocephala). Its growth begins under the serosa of the intermediate host and continues in its body cavity. The morphological changes from the acanthor that has survived the enclosure by the intermediate host’s hemocytes and detached itself from the intestinal wall to the late acanthella and the “cystacanth” are considerable, e.g., organogenesis occurs as well as a rotation of the worm’s axis through 90°, while the tegument of the acanthor becomes stretched to form the acanthella’s tegument. First, the central nuclear mass begins to split into different bodies which become the primordia of the organs.

Acanthella, Fig. 1
figure 13

Transmission electron micrograph of the outer part of a young acanthella and the surrounding spongy envelope (SE) of microvilli-like outgrowths of the larva’s surface. This envelope has...

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Acanthella, Fig. 1
Acanthella, Fig. 2

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Correspondence to Heinz Mehlhorn .

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© 2016 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg

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Mehlhorn, H. (2016). Acanthella. In: Mehlhorn, H. (eds) Encyclopedia of Parasitology. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-662-43978-4_12

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