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Fine structure of the pecten oculi in the Australian galah (Eolophus roseicapillus) (Aves)

Braekevelt, C.R. and Richardson, K.C. (1996) Fine structure of the pecten oculi in the Australian galah (Eolophus roseicapillus) (Aves). Histology and Histopathology, 11 (3). pp. 565-571.

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The pecten oculi of the Australian galah (Eolophus roseicapillus) has been examined by both light and electron microscopy. In this species the pecten is large relative to the size of the eye and is of the pleated type. It consists of 20-25 accordion folds that are joined apically by a bridge of tissue which holds the pecten in a fan-like shape widest at its base. Within each fold are many melanocytes, numerous capillaries as well as larger supply and drainage vessels. The capillaries are extremely specialized for transport functions and display extensive microfolds on both their luminal (inner) and abluminal (outer) borders. Except for the nuclear region which also contains most of the organelles, the endothelial cell bodies are extremely thin. These capillaries are surrounded by thick fibrillar basal laminae which are felt to be structurally important. Pericytes are a common feature within the basal lamina of capillaries. The numerous pleomorphic melanocytes which more or less surround the capillaries are also presumed to be important in structural support of the pecten. The pecten represents a supplementary retinal circulation and is comparable to the falciform process of some teleosts, the conus papillaris of reptiles, the supraretinal vessels of amphibians and some teleosts and the intraretinal vessels of mammals, all of which are felt to be alternative methods of bringing nutrients to the inner retina.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): School of Veterinary Studies
Publisher: Histology and Histopathology
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