A Non-Feeding Pilidium With Apparent Prototroch and Telotroch


  • All the authors have read the paper and have agreed to having their names listed as authors. The authors have no conflict of interest to declare.
  • How to cite this article: Maslakova SA, von Dassow G. A non-feeding pilidium with apparent prototroch and telotroch. J. Exp. Zool. (Mol. Dev. Evol.) 9999B:000–000.

Svetlana A. Maslakova, OIMB, P.O. Box 5389, Charleston, OR 97420. E-mail: svetlana@uoregon.edu


The nemertean pilidium larva is a long-lived planktotrophic form which is challenging to homologize to other invertebrate larval forms. Here we report a reduced, lecithotrophic pilidium which superficially resembles a trochophore. We document the pilidium-like catastrophic metamorphosis of this larva, including devouring of the larval body. Sequences of COI and 16S rRNA show that this larva belongs to an undescribed lineiform species. This novel larval form highlights the long-standing question, is the trochophore a conserved larval ground-plan or a functional design arrived at by convergence? J. Exp. Zool. (Mol. Dev. Evol.) 318B:586–590,2012 © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.