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Arch Histol Cytol. 2000 May;63(2):193-8.

The vascular supply of the villiform processes in the pharynx of the soft-shelled turtle, Trionyx sinensis japonicus. A scanning electron microscopic study of corrosion casts.

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Department of Histology, Nippon Dental University School of Dentistry at Niigata, Japan.


Following our observations of the fine structure of the pharyngeal villiform processes of the hibernating soft-shelled turtle, Trionyx sinensis japonicus (Yokosuka et al., 2000), this paper deals with a scanning electron microscope study of the resin casts of blood vessels supplying those processes. Each villiform process contained arterioles and venules which ran in the axial portion of the process; capillaries formed a network at the periphery of the connective tissue core of the villus. In the distal portions of the villus, the capillaries increased markedly in their caliber to form sinusoidal capillaries. Such a vascular architecture supports the view that the villiform processes serve in the aquatic respiration of the soft-shelled turtle. The casts indicated an occurrence of sphincters in the vascular bed of the villi.

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