Cahyono Purbomartono, Akihiro Takemura, Kazunori Takano


Mucosal secretion is the first line of defense and mucosal lining cells functions as the defensive cellular barrier against foreign agents. The mucus layer covering the body surface of teleost fishes is secreted by mucus cells (MC). In the present study, the structure of MC and its content in the epithelium of the buccal cavity, the gill arch, the esophagus and the skin of parrotfish (Scarus javanicus) were compared histologically and histochemically. A special mucus-secreting organ of the parrotfish (opercular gland) also observed using the same methods. Many MC distributed in the epithelium of buccal cavity, the esophagus and in the opercular gland of parrotfish. Many MC in the special gland of parrotfish suggest that these organs actively secrete much mucus. Contrary, lower density of MC was observed in the skin of parrotfish. Histochemical reactions revealed that out of eight lectin used in the present study. The WGA reacted widely with tissues of parrotfish in the epithelium of buccal cavity, opercular gland, gill and esophagus. These results suggests that N-'acetyl-D-glucosamine is a common carbohydrate residues of glycoproteins contained in mucus. Other lectins, PNA reacted with the skin of parrotfish. Mucus from these tissues contains carbohydrate residues of D-galactose for PNA. Mucus proteins containing these various carbohydrate residues may reveal characteristic natures of each tissues.
Keywords: histology, histochemistry, mucus, parrot fish


Alexander, J. B. and Ingram, G. A., 1992. Noncelular nonspecific defense mechanisms of fish. In M. Faisal and F. M. Hetrick (eds.). Annual Review of Fish Diseases. Vol. 5, Pergamon Press. New York, NY. pp.249-279.

Asakawa, M. 1970. Histochemical studies of the mucus on the epidermis of eel, Anguilla japonica. Nippon Suisan gakkaishi, 36, 83-87

Cameron, A.M. & Endean, R., 1973. Epidermal secretions and the evolution of venom glands in fishes. Toxicon, 11, 401-410.

Dalmo. R. A., Ingefarigtsen, K., BogwaJd, J., 1997. Non-specific defense mechanisms in fish, with particular reference to the reticuloendothelial system (RES). J. Fish Dis. 20,241-273.

Fishelson, L., 1996. Skin morphology and cytology in marine eels adapted to different lifestyles. The Anatomical Record, 246, 15-29.

Fletcher, T.C and White, A., 1973. Lysozyme activity in the plaice (Pleuronectes platessa L.). Experientia 29: 1283-1285.

Fletcher, T.C., Jones, R. & Reid, L., 1976. Identification of glycoproteins in goblet cells of epidermis and gill of plaice (Pleuronectes platessa L.), flounder (Platichthys flesus L.) and rainbow trout (Salmo gairdneri R.). Histochem. J., 8, 597-608.

Gona, O. (1979). Mucus glycoproteins of teleostean fish, a comparative histochemical study. Histochemical Journal, 11, 709-718.

Greenwood, P.H., 1953. Feeding mechanism of the cichlid fish Tilapia esculenta Graham. Nature, 172, 207-208.

Hafez, E.S.E., 1977. Functional anatomi of mucus secreting cells. In Mucusin Health and Disease (Elstein, M. & Parke, D.V., eds), pp. 19-38. New York: Plenum Press.

Handy, R.D., Eddy, F.B. & Remain, G., 1989. In vitro evidence for the ionoregulatory role of rainbow trout mucus in acid, acid/aluminium and zinc toxicity. Journal of Fish Biology, 35, 737-747.

Harris, J.E., Watson, A. and Hunt, S., 1973. Histochemical analysis of mucous cells in the epidermis of brown trout Salmo trutta L. J. Fish Biology, 5, 345-351

Ingram, G.A., 1980. Natural Immunity in Fish. Journal of Fish Biology, 16, 46-60.

Itami, T., Ishida, Y., Endo, F., kawazoe, N. and Takahashi, Y., 1993. Hemmaglutinin in the skin mucus of ayu. Gyobyo Kenkyu, 28, 41-47

Jakowska, S., 1963. Mucus secretion in fish-a note. Ann. N.Y. Acad. Sci. 106, 458-462.

Johnson, D.W., 1973. Endocrine control of hydromineral balance in teleost. Am. Zool. 13, 799-818

Manning, M. J. 1994. Fishes. In. R. J. Turner. (Ed.), Immunology: a comparative approach. John Wiley and Sons, New York, NY. pp.69-100

Madrid, J.F., Ballesta, J., Castell, M.T., Marin, J.A. & Pastor, L.M. (1989). Characterization of glycoconjugates in the intestinal mucosa of vertebrates by means of lectin histochemistry. Acta Histochemica and Cytochemica 22, No. 1, 1-14.

McCahon, C.P., Pascoe, D. & Kavanagh, M., 1987. Histochemical observations on the salmonids Salmo solar L and Salmo trutta L. and the ephemeropterans Baetis rhodani (Pict.) and Ecdyonurus venosus (Fabr.) following a simulated episode of acidity in an upland stream. Hydrobiologia, 153, 3-12.

Pajak, B. and Danguy, A. (1993). Characterization of sugar moieties and ; oligosaccharides sequences in the distal intestinal epithelium of the rainbow trout by means of lectin histochemistry. Journal of Fish Biology, 43, 709-722.

Pickering A.D., 1974. The distibution of mucous cells in the epidermis of the brown trout (Salmo trutta L.) and the char (Salvelinus alpinus L.). J. Fish Biology, 6, 111-118.

Pickering, A. D. and Macey. D. J., 1977. Structure, histochemistry and the effect of handling on the mucous cells of the epidermis of the char Salvelinus alpinus (L.). J. Fish Biol. 10,505-512.

Playle, R.C. & Wood, C.M. (1989). Water chemistry changes in the gill micro-environment of rainbow trout: experimental observations and theory. Journal of Comparative Biology B., 159, 527-537.

Pottinger. T. G., Picketing, A. D., Blackstock. N., 1984. Ectoparasite induced changes in epidermal mucification of the brown trout, Salmo trutta L. J. Fish Biol. 25. 123-128.

Ramos, F. and Smith, A.C., 1978. The C-reactive protein (CRP) test for the detection of early disease in fishes. Aquaculture 14, 261-266.

Rombourt, J.H.W.M., N. Taverne, M. van de Kamp and A.J. Taverne-Thiele, 1995. Differences in mucus and serum immunoglobulin of carp (Cyprinus carpio L.). Developmental and Comparative Immunology 17:309-317.

Rosen M.W & Cornford N.E. (1971) Fluid friction of fish slimes. Nature, London, 234, 49-51.

Sanderson, S.L., Stebar, M.C., Ackermann, K.L., Jones, S.H., Batjakas, I.E. and Kaufman, L., 1996. Mucus entrapment of particles by a suspension-feeding tilapia (Pisces: Cichlidae). Journal of Experimental Biology, 199, 1743-1756.

Shimada, M., Murakami, T.H., Doi, A., Abe, S., Okaichi, T and Watanabe, M., 1982. A morphological and histochemical study on gill primary lamellae of the teleost, Seriola quinqueradiata, exposed to sea blomm. Acta Histochem. Cytochem., Vol. 15, No. 4, 497-507.

Suzuki, Y., 1995. Defense mechanisms in the skin of fish. In: Defense mechanisms in aquatic animals (ed. K. Mori and H. Kamiya), pp. 9-17. Koseisya Koseikaku, Tokyo.

Takemura, A., H. Hara and K. Takano, 1991. Immunochemical identification and partial characterization of female-specific serum proteins in white-edged rockfish, Sebastes taczanowskii. Env. Biol. Fish., 30, 49-56.

Takemura, A. (1994). Vitellogenin-like Substance in the Skin Mucus of Tilapia Oreochromis mossambicus. Fisheries Science, 60(6), 789-790.

Urawa, S., 1992. Epidermal responses of chum salmon (Oncorhynchus keta) fry to the ectoparasitic flagellate Ichthyobodo nectar. Can. J. Zool. 70, 1567-1575.

West, E.S., Todd, W.R., Mason, HS, Van Bruggen, J.T., 1968. Text Book of biochemistry. IV ed. Macmillan, New York, London.

Winn, H.E. and Bardach, J.E. (1959). Differential food selection by moray eels and a possible role of the mucous envelope of parrotfishes in reduction of predation. Ecology, 40, 296-298.

Winn, H.E., 1955. Formation of a mucous envelope at night by the parrotfish. Zoologica 40, 145-157

Full Text: ##PDF##

ISSN: 1410-94255