Scanning X-ray Microscopy of Living and Freeze-Dried Blood Cells in Two Vanadium-Rich Ascidian Species, Phallusia mammillata and Ascidia sydneiensis samea
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Some ascidians (sea squirts) accumulate the transitional metal vanadium in their blood cellsat concentrations of up to 350 mM, about 10 7 times its concentration found in seawater. There are approx-imately 10 different types of blood cell in ascidians. The identity of the true vanadium-containing blood cell(vanadocyte) is controversial and little is known about the subcellular distribution of vanadium. A scanningx-ray microscope installed at the ID21 beamline of the European Synchrotron Radiation Facility to visualizevanadium in ascidian blood cells. Without fixation, freezing or staining realized the visualization of vana-dium localized in living signet ring cells and vacuolated amoebocytes of two vanadium-rich ascidian spe-cies, Phallusia mammillata and Ascidia sydneiensis samea . A combination of transmission andfluorescence images of signet ring cells suggested that in both species the vacuoles contain vanadium.
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Zoological Society of Japan
Graduate School of Science