Histological organization of the intestine in the crayfish Procambarus clarkii
Six longitudinal ridges span the length of the intestine in the crayfish Procambarus clarkii . A simple columnar epithelium with tetralaminar cuticle lines the lumen. Folds of the epithelium overlie a dense irregular connective tissue packed with mixed acinar (alveolar) glands. Mucous secretions are probably involved with formation and lubrication of faecal strings; neither the nature nor the role of the serous secretions is immediately apparent. Aggregations of cells with large cytoplasmic vacuoles, called bladder cells, appear in the subepithelial connective tissue near the tops of the intestinal ridges. The bladder cells are suitably positioned to bolster the integrity of the ridges. Striated muscle of the intestine occurs in inner longitudinal and outer circular layers. The inner longitudinal layer consists of six strips, with one strip associated with the base of each intestinal ridge. The outer circular layer is essentially complete, but there are periodic apertures in this layer on the left and right sides of the intestine, providing nerves and haemolymph vessels with access to the interior of the gut. Based on histological features, and consistent with reports on other crayfish, we conclude that the intestine of P. clarkii has a proctodeal (ectodermal) origin.
The definitive version is available at www.blackwell-synergy.com
Terence H. To, Tracy L. Brenner, Michael J. Cavey and Jerrel L. Wilkens "Histological organization of the intestine in the crayfish Procambarus clarkii" Acta Zoologica (Stockholm) 85 : 119–130 (April 2004)