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Tissue Cell. 2003 Apr;35(2):121-32.

Ultrastructure of the testis in Synbranchus marmoratus (Teleostei, Synbranchidae): the germinal compartment.

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Laboratorio de EmbriologĂ­a Animal, Departamento de Biodiversidad y BiologĂ­a Experimental, Facultad de Ciencias Exactas y Naturales, Universidad de Buenos Aires, Ciudad Universitaria, Pab. II, 4to piso, Buenos Aires C1428EHA, Argentina.


Synbranchus marmoratus, is a protogynic diandric species in which two types of males, primary and secondary, are found. In both types, the germinal compartment in the testes is of the unrestricted lobular type, but in secondary (sex reversed females) males the lobules develop within the former ovarian lamellae. In the present study, the germinal compartment was examined in both types of males using light microscopy as well as scanning and transmission electron microscopy. Germinal compartment is limited by a basement membrane and contains Sertoli and germ cells. During maturation, processes of Sertoli cells form the borders of spermatocysts containing isogenic germ cells. Characteristically, type A and type B spermatogonia have a single nucleolus and grouped mitochondria associated with dense bodies or nuage. Type B spermatogonia, spermatocytes and spermatids are joined by cytoplasmatic bridges and are confined within spermatocysts. Secondary spermatocytes are difficult to find, indicating that this stage is of short duration. Biflagellated spermatozoa have a rounded head, no acrosome, and possess a midpiece consisting of two basal bodies, each of which produces a flagellum with a typical 9+2 microtubular composition. No associations occur between sperm and Sertoli cells. There were no differences between spermatogenesis in primary and secondary males in this protogynic, diandric fish.

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