Acta Parasitologica

, Volume 62, Issue 3, pp 520–528 | Cite as

Ultrastructure of the spermatozoon of Macvicaria obovata (Digenea: Opecoelidae), a parasite of Sparus aurata (Pisces: Teleostei) from the Gulf of Gabès, Mediterranean Sea

  • Hichem KacemEmail author
  • Yann Quilichini
  • Lassad Neifar
  • Jordi Torres
  • Jordi Miquel


The ultrastructural organization of the spermatozoon of the digenean Macvicaria obovata (Opecoelidae) is described by transmission electron microscopy. Alive digeneans were collected from the digestive tract of Sparus aurata (Teleostei, Sparidae), caught from the Gulf of Gabès in Chebba, Tunisia (Eastern Mediterranean Sea). The male gamete of M. obovata is a filiform cell, tapered at both extremities and exhibits typical characters such as two axonemes of different lengths showing the 9+‘1’ trepaxonematan pattern, a nucleus, mitochondria, two bundles of parallel cortical microtubules, external ornamentation of the plasma membrane, spine-like bodies and granules of glycogen. Cortical microtubules are absent in the anterior spermatozoon extremity and appear after the disappearance of the electron-dense material. The first mitochondrion is of moniliform type and it is associated with the external ornamentation of the plasma membrane and spine-like bodies. The second mitochondrion is more posteriorly located, reaching the nuclear region. The present study provides new data on the mature male gamete of M. obovata that may be useful for the understanding of digenean relationships and phylogenetic studies.


Macvicaria obovata Opecoelidae Digenea ultrastructure spermatozoon 


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Copyright information

© Witold Stefański Institute of Parasitology, Polish Academy of Sciences 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hichem Kacem
    • 1
    Email author
  • Yann Quilichini
    • 2
  • Lassad Neifar
    • 1
  • Jordi Torres
    • 3
    • 4
  • Jordi Miquel
    • 3
    • 4
  1. 1.Laboratoire de Biodiversité et Ecosystèmes Aquatiques, Département des Sciences de la VieFaculté des Sciences de SfaxSfaxTunisia
  2. 2.CNRS UMR 6134University of Corsica, Laboratory “Parasites and Mediterranean Ecosystems”Corte, CorsicaFrance
  3. 3.Secció de Parasitologia, Departament de Biologia, Sanitat i Medi Ambient, Facultat de Farmàcia i Ciències l’AlimentacióUniversitat de BarcelonaBarcelonaSpain
  4. 4.Institut de Recerca de la Biodiversitat, Facultat de BiologiaUniversitat de BarcelonaBarcelonaSpain

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