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Ultrastructure of collagenous cuticle of polychaete worm

compiled by

Maja A. Korwin-Kossakowska
Ultrastructure of collagenous cuticle of polycheta worm. Abbreviation: ER - rough endoplasmatic reticulum; F - system of collagenous fibrils of the cuticle, G - Golgi complex; K - nucleus of the epithelium cell; M - mitochondrium; Mv - distal bulbous part of microvillus penetrated the cuticle.
From Mierzejewska & Mierzejewski.
The cuticula of polychaete worms (Polychaeta) is composed mostly of collagen fibrils, embedded in a basic mucopolysacharide substance marked by a low electron density. The collagen fibrils are arranged in layers parallel to the surface of epithelium, the fibrils of cinsecutive layers being more or less orthogonal to each other. The fibrils are perpendicularly interlaced by microvilli.
     The cuticle of the Oligochaeta and Hirudinea is composed to this same pattern.


Mierzejewska, G. and Mierzejewski, P. 1978. Ultrastructure of the jaws of the fossil and recent Eunicida (Polychaeta). - Acta Palaeontologica Polonica 23, 3, 317-339.
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Edited by

Piotr Mierzejewski, the Count of Calmont and Countess Maja A. Korwin-Kossakowska