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Tissue Cell. 1990;22(3):349-58.

Cleaning insect oocytes by dissection and enzyme treatment.

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  • 1Department of Biological Sciences, Smith College, Northampton, MA 01063.


Vitellogenic oocytes from the cockroach Blattella germanica were dissected free of the surrounding follicle cell layer. The continued presence of a resting potential indicated that the defolliculated oocytes remained viable. In other experiments, lysozyme was injected into last nymphal instars; scanning electron micrographs showed that the bacteroids normally found between the follicle cell epithelium and the oocyte membrane were removed by this treatment. Oocytes from injected animals were known to be viable because they developed into living progeny. To assess the mode of action of lysozyme, defolliculated oocytes were exposed in vitro to lysozyme and then a hypotonic rinse; scanning electron micrographs showed that these oocytes were largely free of bacteroids.

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