Project Info

Ultrastructural studies into nephridial development and embryonic coelom fate in arthropods

Depending on the data set used to analyse the phylogenetic relationships of the Arthropoda and among the Arthropoda different and conflicting results are gained. The traditional assumption of a sister group relationship between Annelida and Arthropoda, known as the Articulata hypothesis, is substantiated by the metamery and a preterminal meristematic zone that gives rise to primarily identical parts of the body, the segments. Metamery is expressed by a number of identical subunits in each segment. Among these subunits merely coelomic cavities and metanephridia are expressed in arthropods, but in an early developmental stage only. During further development they undergo major modifications. In order to test whether coelomic cavities and metanephridia are actually phylogenetically informative a comparative study into the formation of the nephridia, the coelom and its fate in euarthropods is proposed. Ultrastructural data are necessary as they provide that information needed to discriminate epithelially lined cavities from matrix lined one and to provide enough substructures to support homology hypotheses.


Prof. Dr. Th. Bartolomaeus, Institut fuer Biologie - Zoologie, Berlin

Dr. Markus Koch, Institut fuer Biologie - Zoologie, Berlin