Studies on the movement, the cytology and the associated micro-organisms of the intestine of Aspiculuris tetraptera (Nematoda)



The intestine of the parasitic nematode Aspiculuris tetraptera has been shown to undergo periodic contractions which suggested that muscles were associated with the intestine. Examination of sections of the intestine has shown that the intestinal cells are similar to those of other nematodes which have been described at the ultra-structural level but there is a network of muscle fibres around the whole of the intestine. There are many virus-like particles in the epithelial cells; yeast-like micro-organisms in the lumen of the intestine are attached to the apical surface of the epithelial cells and they replace some of the microvilli. The part played by the muscle network during digestion and defecation is discussed.