Fish swimbladder: an excellent mesodermal inductor in primary embryonic induction.
Swimbladder of the crucian carp, Carassius auratus, was found to be better as a vegatalizing tissue than other tissues, such as guinea-pig bone marrow, when presumptive ectoderm of Triturus gastrulae was used as reacting tissue. Swimbladder usually induced assemblies of highly organized mesodermal tissues, such as notochord, somites and pronephric tubules, some of which were covered by mesodermal epithelium without any epidermal covering. A special character of the effect of swimbladder was the rather frequent induction of solid balls of undifferentiated cells, which were identified as mesodermal or mesodermal and probably endodermal. These findings show that swimbladder has a strong and fast spreading vegetalizing effect on the responding presumptive ectoderm. (+info)
Pathogenesis of Newcastle disease in chickens experimentally infected with viruses of different virulence.
Groups of 4-week-old White Rock chickens were inoculated intraconjunctivally with nine isolates of Newcastle disease virus representing all pathotypes. Birds were monitored clinically and euthanatized sequentially, with collection of tissues for histopathologic examination and in situ hybridization using an anti-sense digoxigenin-labeled riboprobe corresponding to the sequence of the gene coding for the matrix protein. Disease was most severe with velogenic viscerotropic pathotypes and was characterized by acute systemic illness with extensive necrosis of lymphoid areas in the spleen and intestine. Viral nucleic acid was detected in multiple tissues but most prominently in macrophages associated with lymphoid tissue. Velogenic neurotropic isolates caused central nervous system disease despite minimal amounts of viral nucleic acid detected in neural tissue. Mesogenic and lentogenic pathotypes caused no overt disease; however, viral nucleic acid was present in myocardium and air sac epithelium following infection with these isolates. Compromise of air sac and myocardium may predispose mesogen- and lentogen-infected chickens to secondary infection and/or decreased meat and egg production. (+info)
Communication signals and sound production mechanisms of mormyrid electric fish.
The African weakly electric fishes Pollimyrus isidori and Pollimyrus adspersus (Mormyridae) produce elaborate acoustic displays during social communication in addition to their electric organ discharges (EODs). In this paper, we provide new data on the EODs of these sound-producing mormyrids and on the mechanisms they use to generate species-typical sounds. Although it is known that the EODs are usually species-specific and sexually dimorphic, the EODs of closely related sound-producing mormyrids have not previously been compared. The data presented demonstrate that there is a clear sexual dimorphism in the EOD waveform of P. isidori. Females have a multi-phasic EOD that is more complex than the male's biphasic EOD. In this respect, P. isidori is similar to its more thoroughly studied congener P. adspersus, which has a sexually dimorphic EOD. The new data also reveal that the EODs of these two species are distinct, thus showing for the first time that species-specificity in EODs is characteristic of these fishes, which also generate species-specific courtship sounds. The sound-generating mechanism is based on a drumming muscle coupled to the swimbladder. Transverse sections through decalcified male and female P. adspersus revealed a muscle that envelops the caudal pole of the swimbladder and that is composed of dorso-ventrally oriented fibers. The muscle is five times larger in males (14.5+/-4.4 microl, mean +/- s.d.) than in females (3.2+/-1.8 microl). The fibers are also of significantly larger diameter in males than in females. Males generate courtship sounds and females do not. The function of the swimbladder muscle was tested using behavioral experiments. Male P. adspersus normally produce acoustic courtship displays when presented with female-like electrical stimuli. However, local anesthesia of the swimbladder muscle muted males. In control trials, males continued to produce sounds after injection of either lidocaine in the trunk muscles or saline in the swimbladder muscles. (+info)
Trading force for speed: why superfast crossbridge kinetics leads to superlow forces.
Superfast muscles power high-frequency motions such as sound production and visual tracking. As a class, these muscles also generate low forces. Using the toadfish swimbladder muscle, the fastest known vertebrate muscle, we examined the crossbridge kinetic rates responsible for high contraction rates and how these might affect force generation. Swimbladder fibers have evolved a 10-fold faster crossbridge detachment rate than fast-twitch locomotory fibers, but surprisingly the crossbridge attachment rate has remained unchanged. These kinetics result in very few crossbridges being attached during contraction of superfast fibers (only approximately 1/6 of that in locomotory fibers) and thus low force. This imbalance between attachment and detachment rates is likely to be a general mechanism that imposes a tradeoff of force for speed in all superfast fibers. (+info)
Proliferative lesions in swimbladder of Japanese medaka Oryzias latipes and guppy Poecilia reticulata.
Thirteen cases of proliferative lesions of the swimbladder were encountered in Japanese medaka Oryzias latipes and guppy Poecilia reticulata from about 10,000 medaka and 5000 guppies used in carcinogenicity tests and histologically examined. Two of the 4 cases from medaka and 8 of the 9 from guppies occurred in untreated control specimens. The lesions affected the gas gland epithelium and included hyperplasia, adenoma, and adenocarcinoma. One medaka had hyperplasia of the gas gland epithelium and in 1 guppy the gland was enlarged with an increase in the number of epithelial layers. Gas gland adenomas, 3 cases in medaka and 1 in the guppy, were typically larger than the hyperplastic lesions, formed expansive masses up to 1 mm in greatest dimension, and exhibited a solid or glandular growth pattern and mild cellular pleomorphism. Adenocarcinoma was the most advanced lesion and all 7 cases occurred in guppies. Adenocarcinomas sometimes filled the entire swimbladder and measured up to 2.5 mm in diameter. Cells of adenocarcinomas were highly pleomorphic, with atypical nuclei, and an elevated mitotic activity. Because most of these tumors occurred in fish from control groups or in tests with noncarcinogenic compounds, the lesions observed here are probably spontaneous rather than chemically induced. Their rare occurrence, however, makes swimbladder proliferative lesions in small-fish carcinogenesis models sensitive indicators of compounds that might target cells of the gas gland. (+info)
Histopathological changes in the swimbladder wall of the European eel Anguilla anguilla due to infections with Anguillicola crassus.
The histopathological changes in swimbladders of European eels naturally and experimentally infected with Anguillicola crassus were studied using transmission and scanning electron microscopy. During the course of probably several infections swimbladders undergo characteristic changes. In addition to the thickening of the entire swimbladder wall, and to the folded internal surface of this organ, inflammation, migration of white blood cells, fibrosis and changes in the epithelial cells are frequently seen. Epithelial cells tend to proliferate heavily and form hyperplastic tissues; these processes are accompanied by changes in the internal structure of the cells. The normally cubic cells become spherical or columnar and form folds facing the lumen of the swimbladder. As a consequence, most of these cells lose contact with the blood vessels and show no strict polarity. In heavily affected swimbladders the basal labyrinth of the epithelial cells is reduced, i.e. becomes shorter and less densely packed. The lamina propria shows severe fibrosis with infiltration of white blood cells. Larvae of A. crassus, inhabiting the wall of the swimbladder, were found to be surrounded by cell debris, but this local necrosis does not affect the entire swimbladder in its overall structure. These histological findings can partly explain changes in the gas composition in eels infected with A. crassus. (+info)
Expression of two vacuolar-type ATPase B subunit isoforms in swimbladder gas gland cells of the European eel: nucleotide sequences and deduced amino acid sequences.
The poly(A)(+) RNA of swimbladder gas gland cells of the European eel Anguilla anguilla was isolated and used for cDNA synthesis. Using a pair of degenerate PCR primers directed towards the evolutionary highly conserved central part of the B subunit of vacuolar type H(+)-ATPase (V-ATPase) a fragment of 388 bp was amplified. By sequencing the cloned PCR products two different amplicons with a sequence identity of about 86% were obtained. BLASTN searches revealed a high degree of similarity of both to V-ATPase B subunits of other species. The sequences were completed by performing rapid amplification of cDNA ends PCR, subsequent cloning, and sequencing of the obtained products. The expression of two different isoforms of the V-ATPase B subunit is already demonstrated for Homo sapiens and Bos taurus. This is the first report that attributes the same phenomenon to a non-mammalian species, A. anguilla. The first isoform found in eel (vatB2) shows the highest degree of amino acid sequence homology with the human brain isoform (98.2%), the second one (vatB1) with the B subunit sequence of rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) gill and kidney (98, 6%). The alignment of the deduced amino acid sequences of vatB1 and vatB2 shows that the highest sequence variation between these two isoforms is found at the amino-terminus, where vatB1 is nine amino acids shorter than vatB2, while at the carboxy-terminus it is two amino acids longer than vatB2. This has also been reported for the human and bovine kidney isoforms when compared with the brain isoforms. Northern blot analysis using specific hybridization probes revealed the expression of two mRNA's with lengths of about 2.9 kb and 3.5 kb for vatB1 and vatB2, respectively. For mammals, it is well known that V-ATPases containing the kidney isoforms of the B subunit are responsible for the extrusion of protons across the plasma membranes of several cell types. The fact that eel vatB1 seems to share structural features with the kidney isoforms in mammals supports the hypothesis that in gas gland cells a V-ATPase contributes to the acidification of the blood in the swimbladder. (+info)
Effect of salinity on hatching, survival and infectivity of Anguillicola crassus (Nematoda: Dracunculoidea) larvae.
The effect of salinity on hatching, larval survival and infectivity of Anguillicola crassus was studied under experimental conditions using eggs obtained from naturally infected eels. Egg hatching rate, second-stage larval survival and larval infectivity were maximal in fresh water and declined with increase in salinity. Larvae survived up to 100 d in fresh water, 70 d in 50 % sea water and 40 d in 100% sea water. Infectivity experiments demonstrated that salinity influenced transmission success throughout the life cycle by decreasing total infectivity of the larval population in utero within female A. crassus and when larvae were free-living in the aquatic environment. Infectivity was age-dependent in relation to salinity. Larvae were infective to intermediate and paratenic hosts for up to 80 d in fresh water, 21 d in 50% sea water and up to 8 d in 100% sea water. The data confirm field observations that infection levels decrease with an increase in salinity. The study contributes to experimental verification of the colonization abilities of A. crassus and supports the hypothesis that A. crassus can be disseminated and transmitted in brackish water. The importance of regular monitoring and stringent hygiene practices in the transportation of eels is emphasized. (+info)