The lectin binding properties of Fasciola hepatica miracidia were studied by a panel of fluorescein- and gold-conjugated lectins (ConA, LCA, WGA, LEA, SBA, HPA and UEA-I). The presence of mannose and/or glucose residues was demonstrated with ConA and LCA as weak diffuse fluorescence of the miracidial surface, which was more intense at the anterior part of the larva. The N-acetylglucosamine-binding lectins WGA and LEA reacted intensely with the whole miracidial surface. No labelling with N-acetylgalactosamine and/or galactose-specific (SBA and HPA) and fucose-specific UEA-I lectins was observed. The possibility that the specific recognition of the miracidial surface carbohydrates by lectins may initiate the process of transformation of the miracidia into sporocysts was examined in vitro in physiological saline for Galba truncatula. Incubation in the presence of ConA and WGA resulted in facilitation of the transformation process. Facilitation was absent in the presence of inhibitor sugars. Incubation in the presence of SBA or UEA-I had no effect. The results suggested a possible impact of carbohydrate-lectin interactions in transformation of miracidia of F. hepatica to sporocysts in vivo.
The ecophysiological responses of the homoiochlorophyllous desiccation-tolerant (HDT) plant Haberlea rhodopensis showed that this plant could tolerate water deficit and both leaves and roots had high ability to survive severe desiccation. The changes and correlation between CO₂ assimilation, stomatal conductance, contents of photosynthetic pigments, root respiration and specific leaf area during dehydration–rehydration cycle were investigated. The physiological activity of leaves and roots were examined in fully hydrated (control) plants and during 72 h of dehydration, as well as following 96 h of rehydration every 6 and 24 h. After 6 h of dehydration, the stomatal conductance declined and the intercellular CO₂ concentration increased. The reduction in CO₂ assimilation rate was observed after 54 h of dehydration. There was a good correlation between the root respiration and water content. Our results showed that the plasticity of adaptation in leaves and roots were different during extreme water conditions. Roots were more sensitive and reacted faster to water stress than leaves, but their activity rapidly recovered due to immediate and efficient utilization of periodic water supply.
The ultrastructure of the mature spermatozoon and the spermiogenesis of a cestode belonging to the family Metadilepididae is described for the first time. The mature spermatozoon of Skrjabinoporus merops is characterized by twisted peripheral microtubules, the presence of a single crested body, periaxonemal sheath and electron-dense rods, and the absence of intracytoplasmic walls and inclusions (glycogen or proteinaceous granules); no peripheral microtubules where nucleus contacts the external plasma membrane. Four morphologically distinct regions of the mature spermatozoon are differentiated. The proximal part (Region I) contains a single crested body, periaxonemal sheath is absent in some (proximal) sections and is present in others situated closer to the nucleus. The central Region II is nucleated, and is followed by Region III that contains a periaxonemal sheath. The distal pole, Region IV, is characterized by disintegration of the axoneme. Spermiogenesis follows the type III pattern (Bâ and Marchand 1995) although in S. merops a slight flagellar rotation is observed. The differentiation zone is characterized by the absence of striated roots and intercentriolar body; two centrioles are present, one of which gives rise to a free flagellum. The latter rotates and undergoes proximodistal fusion with the cytoplasmic protrusion of the differentiation zone. Spermiological characters of S. merops are similar to those of the families Taeniidae and Catenotaeniidae. The mature spermatozoon differs from those of the Dilepididae (where the metadilepidid species have previously been classified) by the lack of glycogen.
The effect of pre-treatment with 200 mM NaCl on the response of four barley cultivars (Hordeum vulgare L. cv. Bülbül-89, Kalaycı-97, Tarm-92 and Tokak-157/37) to UV-B radiation was investigated. Salt stress as well as UV-B irradiation led to a decrease of the total chlorophyll (chl) content in all cultivars, except in Kalaycı-97. While carotenoids are almost not affected by NaCl treatment, UV-B irradiation caused an increase by 5–20% of carotenoid content of all cultivars. UV-B induced damages of photosynthetic apparatus were estimated by the rate of photosynthetic electron transport measured by chl fluorescence and the rate of oxygen evolution, the latter being more affected. Pre-treatment with NaCl alleviated harmful effect of UV-B irradiation on Fv/Fm and ETR, but not on oxygen evolution. UV-B-induced and UV-B-absorbing compounds with absorption at 300 and 438 nm increased as a result of UV-B treatment. The level of stress marker proline increased considerably as a result of NaCl treatment, while UV-B irradiation resulted in a pronounced increase of the level of H2O2. MDA enhanced in the seedlings subjected to salt and UV-B stress. Established cross-acclimation to UV-B as a result of salt treatment could be due to the increased free proline and the level of UV-B absorbing compounds in barley seedlings subjected to NaCl.
The ultrastructure of the spermiogenesis of a dilepidid cestode species is described for the first time. The spermiogenesis of Angularella beema is characterised by absence of both flagellar rotation and proximodistal fusion. The differentiation zone is surrounded by cortical microtubules and is delimited by a ring of arching membranes. It contains two centrioles, one of which develops the axoneme that grows directly into the elongating cytoplasmic protrusion. This pattern of spermiogenesis was described as the Type IV spermiogenesis of cestodes. Among cestodes, similar pattern of spermiogenesis is known in the family Hymenolepididae and in some representatives of the family Anoplocephalidae. The mature spermatozoon of A. beema consists of five regions differing in their ultrastructural characteristics. It is characterised by the presence of cortical microtubules (spirally arranged at angle of 30–40° to the spermatozoon axis) and a single crested body. There is a periaxonemal sheath in certain parts of the spermatozoon as well as glycogen-like granules between the periaxonemal sheath and the cortical microtubules. The comparisons of the mature spermatozoon of A. beema with those of other two dilepidid species (Dilepis undula and Molluscotaenia crassiscolex) demonstrate some variation within the family: presence of periaxonemal sheath in A. beema and D. undula and its absence in M. crassiscolex; presence of electron-dense rods in D. undula and their absence in A. beema.