Structure-function relationships in the integument of Salamandra salamandra during ontogenetic development

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Morphological, cytological and transport properties of the integument of Salamandra salamandra were investigated during natural ontogenetic development, from birth to adult. Three stages were operationally defined: I, larvae, from birth to metamorphosis; II, metamorphosis (judged externally by the colour change and loss of the gills); and III, post-metamorphosis to adult. Pieces of skin were fixed at various stages for immunocytochemical examinations, and the electrical properties were investigated on parallel pieces. Distinct cellular changes take place in the skin during metamorphosis, and lectin (PNA, WGA and ConA) binding indicates profound changes in glycoprotein composition of cell membranes, following metamorphosis. Band 3 and carbonic anhydrase I (CA I) were confined to mitochondria-rich (MR)-like cells, and were detected only in the larval stage. CA II on the other hand, was detected both in MR-like and in MR cells following metamorphosis. The electrical studies show that the skin becomes more tight (transepithelial resistance increases) upon metamorphosis, followed by manifestation of amiloride-sensitive short-circuit current (Isc) indicating that functional Na+ uptake has been acquired. The skin of metamorphosed adults had no finite transepithelial C1- conductance, and band 3 was not detected in its MR cells. The functional properties of MR-like and MR cells remain to be established. © 2002 Éditions scientifiques et médicales Elsevier SAS. All rights reserved.




Pederzoli, A., Gambarelli, A., Gabbay, S., Rozman, A., & Katz, U. (2002). Structure-function relationships in the integument of Salamandra salamandra during ontogenetic development. Biology of the Cell, 94(3), 187–196.

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