Ovarian structure in Milnesium tardigradum (Tardigrada, Milnesiidae) during early vitellogenesis

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The ultrastructure of the ovary of Milnesium tardigradum during early vitellogenesis is described. Within the ovary, there were large multinuclear cells surrounded by many mononuclear oocytes. Observation of serial sections revealed four multinuclear cells that were connected to each other by cytoplasmic bridges. Each peripheral oocyte was connected to the multinuclear cell. An enormous ER-like structure was conspicuous in the centre of the multinuclear cell. The presence of large numbers of lipid droplets and yolk granules in both multinuclear cells and many mononuclear oocytes suggested a role as nurse cells. A small number of these oocytes grow to be eggs. The structural features of the multinuclear nurse cell were compared with other known examples.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)61-66
Number of pages6
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2006 Mar


  • Cytoplasmic bridge
  • Multinuclear nurse cells
  • Oocytes
  • Oogenesis
  • Ovary
  • Tardigrades

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aquatic Science


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