An Ultrastructural Comparison of the Attachment Sites Between Gregarina steini and Cryptosporidium muris

Authors

  • ANDREA VALIGUROVÁ,

    1. Department of Botany and Zoology, Faculty of Science, Masaryk University, Kotlářská 2, 611 37 Brno, Czech Republic, and
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  • LADA HOFMANNOVÁ,

    1. Department of Parasitology, University of Veterinary and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Palackého 1/3, 612 42 Brno, Czech Republic, and
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  • BŘETISLAV KOUDELA,

    1. Department of Parasitology, University of Veterinary and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Palackého 1/3, 612 42 Brno, Czech Republic, and
    2. Institute of Parasitology, Biology Centre of the Academy of Science of the Czech Republic, Branišovská 31, 370 05 České Budějovice, Czech Republic, and
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  • JIŘÍ VÁVRA

    1. Institute of Parasitology, Biology Centre of the Academy of Science of the Czech Republic, Branišovská 31, 370 05 České Budějovice, Czech Republic, and
    2. Department of Parasitology, Faculty of Science, University of South Bohemia, Branišovská 31, 370 05 České Budějovice, Czech Republic
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Corresponding Author: A. Valigurová, Department of Botany and Zoology, Faculty of Science, Masaryk University, Kotlářská 2, 611 37 Brno, Czech Republic—Telephone number: +420 541 146 309; FAX number: +420 532 146 213; e-mail: andreav@sci.muni.cz

Abstract

ABSTRACT. Early developmental stages of Gregarina steini Berndt, 1902 from the intestine of Tenebrio molitor larvae were studied by transmission electron microscopy. The formation and structure of the eugregarine attachment site were compared with comparable features found on the feeder organelle of Cryptosporidium muris Tyzzer, 1907, from the stomach of experimentally infected rodents. The similarity of the attachment strategy between both organisms was revealed. The membrane fusion site in G. steini, formed by the trophozoite plasma membrane, host cell plasma membrane and a membrane-like structure limiting the cortical zone of the epimerite, resembles the Y-shaped membrane junction between the host cell plasma membrane, the trophozoite plasma membrane and membrane surrounding the anterior vacuole in C. muris. The anterior vacuole of C. muris appears to be the precursor of the feeder organelle and its structure is very similar to the epimeritic bud and the cortical zone of G. steini trophozoites. In both investigated organisms, the apical complex disappears early during cell invasion. The possibility of the epicellular location of Cryptosporidium on the surface of host cells is discussed.

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