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Morphology of the male reproductive system and sperm ultrastructure of Leucoptera coffeella (Lepidoptera: Lyonetiidae)

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Alves, L., Mancini, K., Lino-Neto J. and Dolder, H. 2006. Morphology of the male reproductive system and sperm ultrastructure of Leucoptera coffeella (Lepidoptera: Lyonetiidae). — Acta Zoologica (Stockholm) 87: 131–139

The male reproductive tract of Leucoptera coffeella was processed for light and transmission electron microscopy. In the testis, the eupyrene cells are arranged in individual cysts, while the apyrene cysts form aggregates, never observed in other Lepidoptera. Both cysts contain 128 spermatozoa, which differ from the typical pattern. In the seminal vesicle, both types of spermatozoa are dispersed in the lumen, also different from other Lepidoptera. The apyrene spermatozoa are similar to those observed for other Lepidoptera. They present an anterior region covered by a dense cap and the flagellum is composed of a 9 + 9 + 2 axoneme and two mitochondrial derivatives. The eupyrene spermatozoa, however, differ from the typical pattern for Lepidoptera. Their anterior region contains a nucleus, an acrosome and a peculiar arc of eight accessory microtubules connected to the plasma membrane by dense bridges. In the nucleus–flagellum region, the ninth accessory microtubule is assembled between both mitochondrial derivatives, to participate in the axoneme. The flagellum comprises a 9 + 9 + 2 axoneme and two mitochondrial derivatives with paracrystalline cores. External to the plasma membrane and close to the accessory microtubules, there are tufts of an amorphous material, suggesting reduced lacinate appendages, while the reticular ones are absent. The reduction of lacinate appendages and the absence of sperm bundles in the seminal vesicle support the concept that the appendages of other Lepidoptera could be associated with the eupyrene aggregations. The characters ‘number of spermatozoa per cyst’ and ‘absence of bundles’ should be considered plesiomorphic, supporting the position of this taxon in the base of the Ditrysia.
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Keywords: Ultrastructure; apyrene spermatozoa; coffee-leaf-miner; eupyrene spermatozoa

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Departamento de Biologia Celular, IB, Universidade Estadual de Campinas, Campinas, SP, Brasil; 2: Departamento de Biologia Geral, Universidade Federal de Viçosa, Viçosa, MG, Brasil

Publication date: 2006-04-01

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