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J Med Entomol. 2008 Nov;45(6):991-9.

Ultrastructure of the salivary glands in Cimex hemipterus (Hemiptera: Cimicidae).

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Department of General Biology, Federal University of Viçosa, 36570-000 Viçosa, MG, Brazil.


Cimex hemipterus (Fabricius) is a hematophagous insect that can be an experimental host of Trypanosoma cruzi and may play a role as vector of Chagas' disease. This work analyzed the structure of the salivary glands of C. hemipterus. The secretory portion of main salivary glands has a single oval lobe that is translucent and is formed from a simple columnar epithelium lined by muscle cells. The gland cells are high, with one or two spherical nuclei, nucleolus, and some condensed chromatin. The cell cytoplasm has a well-developed rough endoplasmic reticulum, electron lucent vesicles, lysosomes, and glycogen deposits. The apical plasma membrane has microvilli, zonula adherens, and desmosomes, whereas the basal plasma membrane has some infoldings associated with mitochondria. The duct of the main salivary glands has flattened cells. The secretory portion of the accessory salivary glands is a single vesicular lobe that is translucent and is formed from a single layer of cells that varies from flattened to cubical onto muscle cells. The cytoplasm contains a well-developed smooth endoplasmic reticulum, vacuoles of different sizes containing secretions, electron lucent, and abundant mitochondria. The baso-lateral plasma membrane of adjacent cells shows septate junctions. The duct is formed from a flattened epithelium like the duct of the principal salivary gland. The secretory cells of the main salivary glands are related to protein synthesis and transport of ions. However, the secretory cells of the accessory salivary glands are related mainly to transport of ions and water from the hemolymph to glandular lumen.

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