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A comparative study of the vitelline cell in Schistosoma mansoni, S. haematobium, S. japonicum and S. mattheei

  • D. A. Erasmus (a1), I. Popiel (a2) and J. R. Shaw (a3)
  • DOI:
  • Published online: 01 April 2009

A comparison is given of the ultrastructure of the vitelline cell in Schistosoma mansoni, S. haematobium, S. japonicum and S. mattheei. Four stages in development of the vitelline cell have been categorized as follows: Stage 1, the undifferentiated cell; Stage 2, the developing cell showing the beginning of synthetic activity; Stage 3, the developing cell showing active protein synthesis; Stage 4, the fully mature vitelline cell. These stages in development have been defined morphologically and Stages 1, 2 and 3 are very similar in all 4 species. Lipid is present in the Stage 4 cells of all species but appears earlier at Stage 3 in S. haematobium and S. mattheei. There are several differences as to the intercellular inclusions of the Stage 4 cells, the most marked of these being the absence of calcareous corpuscles from S. japonicum as compared with the other 3 species.

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D. A. Erasmus (1975). Schistosoma mansoni: development of the vitelline cell, its role in drug sequestration, and changes induced by Astiban. Experimental Parasitology 38, 240–56.

D. A. Erasmus & T. W. Davies (1979). Schistosoma mansoni and S. haematobium: Calcium metabolism of the vitelline cell. Experimental Parasitology 47, 91106.

D. A. Erasmus & I. Popiel (1980). Schistosoma mansoni: Drug induced changes in the cell population of the vitelline gland. Experimental Parasitology 50, 171–87.

J. W. Ford & M. D. Blankespoor (1979). Scanning electron micrographs of the eggs of three human schistosomes. International Journal for Parasitology 9, 141–5.

R. L. Muller & M. G. Taylor (1972). The specific differentiation of schistosome eggs by the Ziehl–Neelsen technique. Transactions of the Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene 66, 1819.

I. Popiel & D. A. Erasmus (1981). Schistosoma mansoni: Niridazole-induced damage to the vitelline gland. Experimental Parasitology 52, 3548.

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