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Sperm Morphology and Spermiogenesis in the Methane-Seep Mollusc Bathynerita naticoidea (Gastropoda: Neritacea) from the Louisiana Slope
Alan N. Hodgson, Kevin J. Eckelbarger and Craig M. Young
Vol. 117, No. 3 (Summer, 1998), pp. 199-207
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3226986
Page Count: 9
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Bathynerita naticoidea, a bathyal neritid prosobranch endemic to oil and gas seeps in the Gulf of Mexico, produces filiform eusperms ~90 μm long. The eusperm is of the introsperm type, typical of invertebrates with internal fertilization, and they are similar in structure to those of shallow-water neritimorph taxa. The head of the sperm is ~26 μm long and consists of an elongate tubular nucleus (~24 μm long X 0.2 μm diameter) and acrosome (~2 μm long), which sits on a subacrosomal plate. The anteriorly positioned acrosome is invaginated posteriorly, with the subacrosomal space containing an axial rod. The mid-piece, which is ~35 μm long, contains two elongate mitochondria, housed in a cytoplasmic sheath. the inner membrane of which is periodically thickened. The centriolar complex is housed in the intra-nuclear canal, 1 μm from the anterior of the nucleus. Thus the axoneme penetrates most of the length of the nucleus. Associated with the first outer doublets of the axoneme is a rod-like structure which runs the length of the mid-piece and for part of the tail. Unlike most other neritids, the axoneme of B. naticoidea is not bent at the junction of the mid-piece and tailpiece, and the tail is not terminally expanded. Whilst the sperm of B. naticoidea has many structural similarities to those of other Neritidae, the simple terminal end and more elongate mid-piece rod suggests that Bathynerita may be more closely related to the Phenacolepadidae than the Neritidae. Spermiogenesis is as described for shallow water neritids. Associated with the developing spermatids are Sertoli cells, the structure of which is similar to that described for other gastropods.
Invertebrate Biology © 1998 American Microscopical Society