Location and morphology of chloride cells were studied in the sea bass (Dicentrarchus labrax) from hatching to the juvenile stage to determine the development of the adult osmoregulatory function as seen in adult fish. During the studied developmental sequence changes were observed in the location, number, size and structure of these cells, that were studied by microscopy (light, scanning electron, transmission electron and confocal) and immunocytochemistry. Chloride cells were found on the tegument and on the gills. They were present on the tegument already at hatching, before the development of the gills. Their density as well as their association in multicellular complexes decreased during the postembryonic development. In old larvae and in juveniles, cutaneous chloride cells were associated with the fins, the developing scales and the lateral line. Gills developed gradually during the prelarval stage and the gill arches were present at mouth opening. At that time chloride cells were already numerous on the gill arches. In older larvae, during the progressive development of the gill filaments, chloride cells were numerous on these structures and formed multicellular complexes. Several stages in the differentiation of these cells were studied, including the development of the tubulovesicular system at the end of the prelarval stage, as well as the stratification appearance of the cytoplasm that was concomitant with the considerable development of the tubular system and its association with the endoplasmic reticulum during the larval period. The involvement of different epithelia in the osmoregulatory process during the postembryonic development of this species, as well as the role of chloride cells during successive developmental stages, is discussed.
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Varsamos, S., Diaz, J., Charmantier, G. et al. Location and morphology of chloride cells during the post-embryonic development of the european sea bass, Dicentrarchus labrax . Anat Embryol 205, 203–213 (2002). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00429-002-0231-3
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