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Acta Parasitol. 2012 Mar;57(1):20-5. doi: 10.2478/s11686-012-0014-9. Epub 2012 Feb 25.

Utrastructural observations on Goussia metchnikovi (Laveran, 1897) in the spleen of gudgeon, Gobio gobio L.

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  • 1School of Life Sciences, Faculty of Science, Kingston University, Kingston upon Thames, Surrey, UK.


The ultrastructure of gamonts and sporulated oocysts of Goussia metchnikovi in the spleen of gudgeon, Gobio gobio from the river Lee, England is described. In developing microgamonts, small amylopectin granules were grouped centrally and nuclei were often arranged peripherally, close to the surface membrane. Nuclear chromatin condensed into peripheral dense portions that became the nuclei of flagellated microgametes, released to the parasitophorous vacuole. The cytoplasm of macrogametes had larger, scattered amylopectin granules, lipid globules and small electron-dense bodies, but no obvious wall forming bodies; peripheral vesicular structures with the appearance of mitochondria were also present and the parasitophorous vacuole contained flocculent material, but was otherwise free of structures. Sporulated oocysts contained four sporocysts and oocyst walls appeared to consist of a single membrane. Sporocyst walls showed a dehiscence suture, characteristic of the genus Goussia, which had filamentous extensions in places. The sporocyst wall comprised a dense inner layer and a thin outer layer with a fuzzy coat, separated by an electron lucent layer. Groups of oocysts were encapsulated by fibrous layers and inflammatory cells, and many sporocysts and their contained sporozoites showed evidence of elimination by the host.

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