Five-month-old pentactulae (juveniles) of the holothurian Eupentacta fraudatrixpossess a well-developed alimentary canal comprising an esophagus, a stomach, an intestine, and a rectum. The intestine in turn consists of five parts. The esophagus, stomach, and rectum are lined with a cuticular epithelium. The intestinal lining lacks a cuticle and is composed of mainly polyfunctional vesicular enterocytes. Granular enterocytes are less abundant; their cytoplasm contains electron-dense granules, which are probably zymogenic. The gut connective tissue consists of electron-lucent ground substance with collagen fibers and embedded coelomocytes. The gut mesothelium is composed of myoepithelial and peritoneal cells and contains the neurons of the hyponeural nerve plexus.
Russian Journal of Marine Biology – Springer Journals
Published: Oct 16, 2004
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