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J Morphol. 2015 Jul;276(7):797-817. doi: 10.1002/jmor.20380. Epub 2015 Apr 3.

Development and microstructure of tooth histotypes in the blue shark, Prionace glauca (Carcharhiniformes: Carcharhinidae) and the great white shark, Carcharodon carcharias (Lamniformes: Lamnidae).

Author information

1
Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York, 14853.
2
Institute of Biotechnology and Life Science Technologies, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York, 14853.

Abstract

Elasmobranchs exhibit two distinct arrangements of mineralized tissues in the teeth that are known as orthodont and osteodont histotypes. Traditionally, it has been said that orthodont teeth maintain a pulp cavity throughout tooth development whereas osteodont teeth are filled with osteodentine and lack a pulp cavity when fully developed. We used light microscopy, scanning electron microscopy, and high-resolution micro-computed tomography to compare the structure and development of elasmobranch teeth representing the two histotypes. As an example of the orthodont histotype, we studied teeth of the blue shark, Prionace glauca (Carcharhiniformes: Carcharhinidae). For the osteodont histotype, we studied teeth of the great white shark, Carcharodon carcharias (Lamniformes: Lamnidae). We document similarities and differences in tooth development and the microstructure of tissues in these two species and review the history of definitions and interpretations of elasmobranch tooth histotypes. We discuss a possible correlation between tooth histotype and tooth replacement and review the history of histotype differentiation in sharks. We find that contrary to a long held misconception, there is no orthodentine in the osteodont teeth of C. carcharias.

KEYWORDS:

dental anatomy; elasmobranchii; history of morphology; orthodentine; osteodentine

PMID:
25845614
DOI:
10.1002/jmor.20380
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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