Jan 1, 1976

Ultrastructural comparison of the midgut epithelia of fleas with different feeding behavior patterns (Xenopsylla cheopis, Echidnophaga gallinacea, Tunga penetrans, Siphonaptera, Pulicidae)

Acta Tropica
C A Reinhardt


This morphological study describes the ultrastructure of the midgut of three flea species, including temporary parasitic fleas (both sexes of Xenopsylla cheopis, males and immature females of Echidnophaga gallinacea and Tunga penetrans) and stationary parasitic fleas (mature females of E. gallinacea and T. penetrans). (1) Three cell types (a,b,c) constitute the midgut epithelium, each appearing in a characteristic and constant frequency along the whole midgut, a) The functional digestive cells form the main part of the epithelium as one layer of cylindric cells. Nuclear volume and nucleus/cytoplasm ratio have been estimated (with morphometric methods) to be the same in both sexes of E. gallinacea and T. penetrans. b) Some single regenerative cells or nests, containing 5-10 cells per section plane, lay at the base of the epithelium (2-3 cells or nests per cross section of a midgut). c) Secretory cells are characterized by their opaque cytoplasm which contains electron-dense vesicles. They have few microvilli and no basal labyrinth and are placed between digestive cells only as single cells (1-2 per cross section of a midgut). (2) After the first bloodmeal some ultrastructural changes occur in the midgut of all fleas. These chang...Continue Reading

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Mentioned in this Paper

Metabolic Process, Cellular
Flea Infestation
Golgi Apparatus
Science of Morphology
Cell Nucleus
Process of Secretion

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