The morphology of the tongue of the adult barking deer, Muntiacus muntjak, was examined by light and scanning electron microscopy. The result showed that the tongue of the barking deer was elongated with a rounded apex. Four types of lingual papillae were observed: filiform, fungiform, vallate and large conical papillae. The filiform papillae represented the most numerous types of lingual papillae. The fungiform papillae were distributed among the filiform papillae on the rostral and the body portions of the tongue. Ten to thirteen vallate papillae were distributed on both sides of the lingual prominence among the large conical papillae. Histologically, both the fungiform and vallate papillae contain taste buds in the epithelial layer. The distribution and types of lingual papillae found in the barking deer are similar to those in the other species that belong to the family Cervidae.
Edible bird nests (EBNs) are consumed worldwide for various health benefits. EBNs are nests built from the saliva of swiftlets of Aerodramus species. The global market for EBNs is on the rise, especially from Hong Kong and mainland China. In the past, EBNs were harvested mainly from natural caves; however in the recent years, there has been a rapid growth of swiftlet farming. Little is known about the actual composition of EBNs except for protein, carbohydrate, ash and lipid contents, amino acids, vitamins and macro/ micronutrients. Besides the biochemical components of EBNs, are there any other structures that are associated with EBNs? This paper reports on the structural analysis of raw unprocessed farm and processed commercial EBNs. The raw EBNs were purchased from swiftlet farms in five locations in Peninsula Malaysia: Kuala Sanglang (Perlis; 6° 16' 0"N, 100° 12' 0"E), Pantai Remis (Perak; 4º 27' 0" N, 100º 38' 0" E), Kluang (Johor; 02º 012 303N 103º 192 583E), Kajang (Selangor; 2º 59' 0"N, 101º 47' 0"E) and Kota Bharu (Kelantan; 6º 8' 0"N, 102º 15' 0"E). The commercial nests were purchased from five different Chinese traditional medicinal shops (Companies A-E). A portion of each EBN was randomly broken into small fragments, attached to carbon tape and coated with gold and palladium particles for examination and photography under a scanning electron microscope. Structural analysis revealed the presence of mites, fungi, bacteria and feather strands on both the raw and commercial nests. Mite eggshells and faecal pellets, and body parts of other arthropods were seen only in the raw nests. The commercial nests had a variety of unidentified structures and substances coated on the nests' surfaces that were not found on the raw nests. The presence of these contaminants may jeopardise the quality of EBNs and pose health risks to consumers. Further identification of the mites and their allergens, fungi and bacteria are on-going and will be reported separately.
The complete life cycle of a pennellid copepod Peniculus minuticaudae Shiino, 1956 is proposed based on the discovery of all post-embryonic stages together with the post-metamorphic adult females infecting the fins of threadsail filefish Stephanolepis cirrhifer (Monacanthidae) cultured in a fish farm at Ehime Prefecture, Japan. The hatching stage was the infective copepodid. The life cycle of P. minuticaudae consists of six stages separated by moults: the copepodid, four chalimi and adult. In this study, the adult males were observed frequently in precopulatory amplexus with various stages of females however, copulation occurs only between adults. Fertilized pre-metamorphic adult females carrying spermatophores may detach from the host and settle again before undergoing massive differential growth into the post-metamorphic adult female. Comparison of the life cycle of P. minuticaudae has been made with three known pennellids: Lernaeocera branchialis (Linnaeus, 1767), Cardiodectes medusaeus (Wilson, 1908) and Lernaeenicus sprattae (Sowerby, 1806). Among the compared species, P. minuticaudae is the first ectoparasitic pennellid to be discovered to complete its life cycle on a single host without any change in infection site preferences between infective copepodid and fertilized pre-metamorphic female.
Sampling of a large number of elasmobranchs from coastal waters off Borneo revealed the presence of five new species of Dollfusiella Campbell & Beveridge, 1994 (Trypanorhyncha: Eutetrarhynchidae), namely D. angustiformis n. sp., D. hemispinosa n. sp., D. spinosa n. sp., D. imparispinis n. sp. and D. parva n. sp. Dollfusiella angustiformis n. sp. is described from the spiral intestines of four species of the dasyatid stingray genus Himantura Müller & Henle from both the Indonesian and Malaysian parts of Borneo. All the other species were obtained from Malaysian Borneo. Dollfusiella hemispinosa n. sp. is described from the spiral intestines of three species of Himantura, whereas D. spinosa n. sp. was obtained from several specimens of Pastinachus solocirostris Last, Manjaji & Yearsley (Dasyatidae) as well as from Taeniura lymma 1 (sensu Naylor et al., 2012) (Dasyatidae), Neotrygon kuhlii 2 (sensu Naylor et al., 2012) (Dasyatidae), and Glaucostegus cf. typus (sensu Naylor et al., 2012) (Rhinobatidae). Dollfusiella imparispinis n. sp. is described from the spiral intestine of a single specimen of Chiloscyllium punctatum Müller & Henle (Hemiscyllidae) from the South China Sea off Sarawak, whereas D. parva n. sp. was obtained from several species of Himantura. Specimens of the five novel taxa possess scoleces covered with enlarged microtriches, a morphological characteristic exhibited by several other congeners. However, the new species differ from all congeners by possessing unique patterns of oncotaxy as well as combinations of additional morphological features. The number of valid species within Dollfusiella is increased to 26. For this reason, a key for the species of Dollfusiella is provided. Furthermore, novel information on hosts and geographic distribution is provided for two previously described species of Dollfusiella, D. michiae (Southwell, 1929) and D. spinulifera (Beveridge & Jones, 2000). The latter species differs slightly from the original description and shows a much higher variability with regard to the lengths of the scolex and muscular bulbs and the number of testes. These variable characters subdivided specimens of D. spinulifera into relatively distinct groups. However, the specimens did not differ in their oncotaxy and are considered to represent a single variable species.
The cestode fauna of the darkspotted numbfish, Narcine maculata (Shaw) (Torpediniformes: Narcinidae), from Malaysian Bomrneo was examined for the first time. This work resulted in the discovery of a new genus and two new species of Anteroporidae (Lecanicephalidea). Sesquipedalapex comicus gen. n., sp. n. was erected on the basis of the peculiarities of its scolex, in particular its possession of an extremely long apical modification of the scolex proper, which readily distinguishes it from the other genus in the family. The genus is also distinct in its possession of acetabula that are in the form of suckers, rather than bothridiate in form. This species was found to deeply embed its elongate apical structure for much of its length within the intestinal mucosa, provoking a papilliform expansion of the outer wall of the spiral intestine at the site of attachment. The second new species, Anteropora klosmamorphis sp. n., is readily distinguished from its congeners on the basis of testis number and bothridial shape. Both new species are hyperapolytic. The diagnosis of Anteroporidae is amended to accommodate both new taxa. This increases the total number of genera in the family to two, and the total number of species to five.
A study of the anterior adhesive apparatus (head organs) of Bravohollisia gussevi Lim, 1995 was carried out using light and electron microscopy. The anterior adhesive apparatus or head organs in B. gussevi comprise 6 circular openings or apertures in the antero-lateral region, associated pits lined with specialized microvillous tegument that differ from the general body tegument, a bundle of ducts, and uninucleate gland cells located lateral to the pharynx. The uninucleate glands of the anterior adhesive apparatus (head organs) comprise 2 types of cells, one kind of cell producing rod-like bodies (S1) and the other oval bodies (S2). The S1 bodies are filled with numerous, less electron-dense vesicles in an electron-dense matrix, while S2 bodies have no vesicles but contain a more homogeneous electron-dense matrix. Interlinking band-like structures were observed between S1 bodies. Similar band-like structures were found between S2 bodies. The formation of S1 bodies was followed by transmission electron microscopy. However, the formation of S2 bodies was unclear and could not be resolved. Uniciliated structures were also observed around the openings of the anterior adhesive apparatus. Each uniciliated structure is usually associated with an opening of a gland cell producing granular, electron-dense, secretory bodies, which differ from the secretions produced by the lateral gland cells of the anterior adhesive apparatus.
Strongyloides callosciureus n. sp. (Nematoda: Rhabditoidea), from Asian sciurids, is described based on morphology, morphometry, and the small and large subunit (SSU/LSU) ribosomal RNA gene (rDNA) sequences. This new species was collected from Pallas's squirrels (Callosciurus erythraeus) in the central part of mainland Japan (Honshu), which were originally introduced from Taiwan some decades ago, and plantain squirrels (Callosciurus notatus) imported from Malaysia as personal pets. For comparison, Strongyloides robustus Chandler, 1942 was collected from American red squirrels (Tamiasciurus hudsonicus) and southern flying squirrels (Glaucomys volans) imported from the United States as personal pets. The parasitic females found in North American and Asian sciurids shared some key morphological features such as the ovary running spirally around the gut, and the shapes of the stoma in the apical view and the tail. However, morphometric features of parasitic females in North American and Asian sciurids differed significantly from each other; the former was larger than the latter, and the relative position of the vulva to the whole body length from the mouth was different. The SSU/LSU rDNA sequences supported the division of sciurid Strongyloides isolates by geographical distribution of the host and morphological features, leading us to propose the erection of new species.