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Fish Shellfish Immunol. 2009 Aug;27(2):164-74. doi: 10.1016/j.fsi.2009.03.009. Epub 2009 Mar 28.

Regeneration of excised mantle tissue by the silver-lip pearl oyster, Pinctada maxima (Jameson).

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Pearl Oyster Research Group, School of Marine & Tropical Biology, James Cook University, Townsville, Queensland 4811, Australia.


This study investigated the capacity for mantle regeneration in the pearl oyster Pinctada maxima. Oysters were anaesthetised with 2.5 mL L(-1) prophylene phenoxetol prior to a piece of tissue (approximately 10 x 30 mm(2)) being excised from the ventral region of the mantle. In the first experiment, 56 oysters with mean (+/-SD) dorso-ventral measurement (DVM) of 125.5 +/- 8.9 mm had tissue excised from either the right mantle lobe, left mantle lobe or both mantle lobes. Following a further three month period in suspended culture, oyster survival was recorded and two oysters were selected arbitrarily from each group to be sacrificed for histological examination of healed mantle. In the second experiment 36 oysters with mean (+/-SD) DVM of 151.6 +/- 13.4 mm were used for excision of the distal part of the ventral region of the left mantle lobe. Two oysters were sampled at 1, 3, 6, 12, 24, 36, 48, 72 and 120 h (5 days) after mantle excision, and then at 12, 24, 45, 72 and 90 d after mantle excision for histological and histochemical analysis of mantle regeneration. There was almost 100 percent survival in both experiments. Healing and regeneration of mantle tissue in oysters subject to excision from the left, right or both mantle lobes was evident, with regenerated mantle appearing similar to non-regenerated mantle. All external and internal components of non-regenerated mantle were present in regenerated mantle tissue. Epithelization signifying wound healing occurred within 36-72 h and was characterised by a reduced wound area, haemocyte infiltration and accumulation, and cell dedifferentiation. Within 48 h of mantle excision, the latero-ventral edges of the wound flexed dorsally and attached to the dorsal edge of the wound reducing the wound area. Between five and twelve days after excision, the distal part of the mantle had divided into three small lobes which developed into the outer, middle and inner mantle folds two weeks later. Ninety days after excision the mantle had completely regenerated with histological observations indicating no difference in epithelial structure or in other internal mantle accessories when compared to non-regenerated mantle. Shell material began to be secreted onto the shell by regenerating mantle twelve days after excision. Initially this occurred in a position dorsal to the non-injured mantle edge. However, forty-five days after mantle excision, regenerated mantle had extended ventrally to a position similar to that of non-injured mantle. Nacre deposition by regenerated mantle had now reached the same position ventrally as that of non-injured mantle indicating full acquisition of nacre secreting abilities by regenerated mantle.

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