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Neotropical Ichthyology

Print version ISSN 1679-6225


OLIVEIRA, Cristina L. C. de; MALABARBA, Luiz R.  and  BURNS, John R.. Comparative morphology of gill glands in externally fertilizing and inseminating species of cheirodontine fishes, with implications on the phylogeny of the family Characidae (Actinopterygii: Characiformes). Neotrop. ichthyol. [online]. 2012, vol.10, n.2, pp.349-360.  Epub May 24, 2012. ISSN 1679-6225.

The structure and form of gill gland among inseminating and externally fertilizing species of the Cheirodontinae are described under light microscopy, scanning electron microscopy, and transmission electron microscopy, and compared to other members of the family Characidae. At least one species from thirteen cheirodontine genera were analyzed, totaling seventeen species. Gill glands were found in all analyzed mature males of Cheirodontinae and were always absent in females, being located on the anteriormost portion of the lower branch of the first gill arch, extending posteriorly through a variable number of gill filaments. Gill glands of all cheirodontines and of all characid species in which this organ has been described possess the same structure, being considered homologous and supporting a single origin of the structure in a common ancestor to Clade A and Clade B characids.

Keywords : Characid clade A; Characid clade B; Gill filaments; Gill secondary lamellae.

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