Tsujino, Y & Shigeta, Y. 2012: Biological response to experimental damage of the phragmocone and siphuncle in Nautilus pompilius Linnaeus. Lethaia, Vol. 45, pp. 443–449.

Three adult specimens of Nautilus pomplilius Linnaeus from the Philippines were experimented on to estimate the biological response to damage of the phragmocone and siphuncle in this cephalopod mollusc. In addition, the data obtained from the experiments were used for discussion of shell damage in ammonoids and in other extinct cephalopods. Specimen’s phragmocone and siphuncle were perforated and severed artificially, followed by observations in the laboratory tank during periods of 75 and 132 days. For at least 2 or 3 months, all individuals survived after damage to the phragmocone and siphuncle despite loss of neutral buoyancy. Based on our observations after completion of the experiments, the severed adoral remaining part of siphuncle healed by the siphunclar epithelium. In addition, perforation of the phragmocone was partly repaired by shell secretion from the dorsally extending mantle due to subsequent volution of shell growth. Our experiments revealed that damage to the phragmocone and siphuncle in Nautilus was not necessarily a lethal injury. It may be possible that such biological response also applies to extinct ammonoids and nautiloids. In a similar case of extinct ammonoids and nautiloids, damage to their phragmocone and siphuncle may also not have been a lethal injury as with Nautilus. However, some factors leading to death are likely to be dependent on the degree of damage to the phragmocone and siphuncle and influence of hydraulic pressure. □Ammonoids, injury, nautiloids, Nautilus, phragmocone, repair, siphuncle.