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Gonadal morphology of threadfin breams nemipterus bathybius and nemipterus virgatus evidence of rudimentary hermaphroditism


, : Gonadal morphology of threadfin breams nemipterus bathybius and nemipterus virgatus evidence of rudimentary hermaphroditism. Japanese Journal of Ichthyology 36(1): 82-89

Gonads of young and adult Nemipterus bathybius and N. virgatus were examined histologically. In young N. bathybius males, the testis is composed of a dorsal and a ventral zone separated by thin connective tissue. A duct runs through the center of the dorsal zone, and has an opening on the ventromedian surface of the body, separate from the male genital pore. Along with the start of spermatogenesis in the ventral zone, germ cells distributed in the dorsal zone also begin spermatogenesis and eventually develop into spermatozoa. Consequently, in mature testes the sperm sinuses are formed to enclose the dorsal duct, leaving a small number of germ cells, including oviform cells, retained in the lamellar projections of the duct. Tests of N. virgatus also have essentially the same histological characteristics. No trace of testicular tissue is present in the ovaries, except in four cases of intersexual gonads found in both nemipterid species. It is concluded that the dorsal duct and its lamellar projections are remnants of the ovarian cavity-oviduct system and ovigerous lamellae of the ovarian portion of the gonad, and that these two nemipterid species are rudimentary hermaphrodites in which males have bisexual gonads of the delimited type in their juvenile stages.

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