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Chloride cell responses to long-term exposure to distilled and hard water in the gill of the armored catfish, Hypostomus tietensis (Loricariidae)

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Fernandes, M. N. & Perna-Martins, S. A. 2002. Chloride cell responses to long-term exposure to distilled and hard water in the armored catfish, Hypostomus tietensis (Loricariidae). —Acta Zoologica (Stockholm) 83: 321–328

The morphological changes in the gill chloride cells of the armored catfish, Hypostomus tietensis, were investigated after 15 days’ exposure to either distilled or hard water. The thickness of the water–blood barrier in the lamellae increased significantly in fish kept in distilled water due to the high proliferation of chloride cells. The apical surface of about 68% of chloride cells was sharply reduced by the development of an apical crypt with a sponge-like surface, although no change in the chloride cell fractional area was found. In contrast, H. tietensis kept in Na+, Cl and Ca2+ rich water displayed no significant changes in the number of chloride cells or in their apical surface morphology compared with the control fish. Chloride cell response to ion challenge in H. tietensis suggested the involvement of different strategies to maintain homeostasis in ion-poor water, which may be related to the life history of species.

Keywords: Hypostomus tietensis; catfish; chloride cells; distilled water; gill; hard water

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Federal University of São Carlos, Department of Physiological Sciences, PO Box 676, 13565–905 São Carlos, SP, Brazil.

Publication date: 2002-10-01

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