Central nervous system and sense organs, with special reference to photoreceptor-like sensory elements, in Polygordius appendiculatus (Annelida), an interstitial polychaete with uncertain phylogenetic affinities

Autor(en): Wilkens, Verena
Purschke, Gunter 
Stichwörter: 18S RDNA; ciliary photoreceptor; EYES; FINE-STRUCTURE; Marine & Freshwater Biology; nuchal organ; NUCHAL ORGANS; PLATYNEREIS-DUMERILII; POSITION; PROTODRILOIDES; PYGOSPIO-ELEGANS POLYCHAETA; rhabdomeric; SACCOCIRRIDAE; Saccocirrus; ULTRASTRUCTURAL INVESTIGATIONS; Zoology
Erscheinungsdatum: 2009
Herausgeber: WILEY
Journal: INVERTEBRATE BIOLOGY
Volumen: 128
Ausgabe: 1
Startseite: 46
Seitenende: 64
Zusammenfassung: 
The phylogenetic position of Polygordius is still pending; relationships with either Opheliidae or with Saccocirrus are the most favored hypotheses. The present study of Polygordius appendiculatus was designed to look for morphological characters supporting either of these two hypotheses. The homology of the anterior appendages, and the structure of the central nervous system and nuchal organ all required clarification; we also examined whether photoreceptor-like sense organs exist in adults. From their innervation pattern, it is likely that the anterior appendages represent palps. They lack structures typical of palps in Canalipalpata, such as musculature and coelomic cavities, which would be expected in the case of a saccocirrid relationship. Thirteen photoreceptor-like sense organs were found in front of the brain, the only structures resembling photoreceptors in adults of P. appendiculatus. These multicellular sense organs comprise a supportive cell and several sensory cells enclosing an extracellular cavity. There are three different types of sensory cells: one rhabdomeric and two ciliary. These sensory cells are combined differently into three forms of sense organ: the most frequent uses all three types of sensory cells, the second possesses one rhabdomeric and one ciliary cell type, and the third has two types of ciliary sensory cells. Whereas similar sensory cells are frequently found in various polychaetes, their combination in one sensory organ is unique to Polygordius and is considered to represent an autapomorphy. The nuchal organs exhibit features typical of polychaetes; there are no specific features in common with Saccocirrus. Instead, the covering structures show obvious similarities to Opheliidae, as can also be found in the central nervous system. Altogether, the current observations do not contradict a relationship with opheliids but provide no evidence of a relationship with Saccocirrus as has been found in certain molecular analyses, and thus currently leave the phylogenetic position of Polygordius unresolved.
ISSN: 10778306
DOI: 10.1111/j.1744-7410.2008.00145.x

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