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An extensive literature has accumulated dealing with the cytology of Malpighian tubules of insects as revealed by the light microscope, but relatively few papers have dealt with a study of their ultrastructure (Bradfield, 1953; Beams, Tahmisian and Devine, 1955). Shiwago (1915) called attention to the behavior of the mitochondria in the Malpighian tubules of the cockroach. He observed that they apparently migrate from the cell body into the striated border and hence, into the lumen of the tubule. Beams, Tahmisian and Devine (1955) have, in essence, confirmed Shiwago's results and they have been able to reveal, because of the high resolution of the electron microscope, that the striated border is composed of microvilli, instead of cilia as claimed by some (Davis, 192 7). In addition, they describe in detail how the mitochondria migrate from the cell body into the microvilli and how the tips of the mitochondria-laden villi are eventually pinched off into the lumen of the tubule. Since this type of mitochondrial behavior is unusual, even to the extent of their presence in the microvilli, it was thought important that a further study of them be made in other species of insects to determine how widespread this condition is.

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Proceedings of the Iowa Academy of Science





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© Copyright 1957 by the Iowa Academy of Science, Inc.



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