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J Morphol. 2000 Nov;246(2):53-8.

Peristaltic squeezing of sperm bundles at the late stage of spermatogenesis in the silkworm, Bombyx mori.

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Biological Laboratory, Rakuno Gakuen University, Ebetsu, Japan.


Silkworm (Lepidoptera) males produce dimorphic sperm, nucleate eupyrene sperm, and anucleate apyrene sperm. The eupyrene sperm is the ordinary sperm fertilizing eggs, while the function of the apyrene sperm, which are about four times as numerous as the eupyrene sperm, is still uncertain. We found the peristaltic phenomenon at the very late stage of spermatogenesis. Peristalsis occurs in both eupyrene and apyrene sperm bundles. Through peristaltic action, cytoplasm of the eupyrene sperm and both cytoplasm and nuclei of the apyrene sperm are discarded from the posterior end of the sperm bundles. Peristaltic squeezing seems to be a process to eliminate the irregular nuclei of apyrene sperm while preserving the nuclei of eupyrene sperm.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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