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Multicellular antennal sensilla containing a sensory cell with a short dendrite and dense-core granules in the insect, Hypogastrura socialis (Collembola): intermolt and molting stages

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At the antennal tip of the collembolan insect Hypogastrura socialis two terminal-pore sensilla are located, which, in addition to normally structured and most probably chemosensitive sensory cells, also contain aberrant sensory cells. Portions of these cells resemble chemoreceptors but also shown are features that, as a rule, occur in mechanoreceptors. One cell in each sensillum is remarkable in two characteristics: (1) Its dendritic outer segment does not reach the cuticular outer structures of the sensillum; (2) it contains dense-core granules (diameter 60–110 nm) within its perikaryon, its dendritic inner segment and its axon. Additionally, these two cells do not show lengthening of their dendritic outer segment during molt as do all other sensory cells. Among the fibers of one major branch of the antennal nerve within the head capsule a single axon was observed to contain dense-core granules. This axon was traced to its termination where normal synaptical contacts were found. Based on the assumption that the axon belongs to one of the granule-containing sensory cells two alternative hypotheses are proposed: (1) an individual sensory cell of a sensillum may synthesize a transmitter that is different from that of the other sensory cells of this sensillum; (2) the aberrant cells have lost exteroceptive functions but act as neuromodulators

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Correspondence to Prof. Dr. H. Altner.

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Supported by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (SFB 4/G1)

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Altner, H., Altner, I. Multicellular antennal sensilla containing a sensory cell with a short dendrite and dense-core granules in the insect, Hypogastrura socialis (Collembola): intermolt and molting stages. Cell Tissue Res. 241, 119–128 (1985). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00214633

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Key words

  • Sensory cells
  • Sensilla
  • Neurosecretory granules
  • Synapses
  • Insect antennae
  • Hypogastrura socialis (Collembola)