Abnormal periostracum secretion during the mineralization process of the pearl in the blacklip pearl oyster Pinctada margaritifera
Ifremer, chemin de Maguelonne, 34250 Palavas-Les-Flots, France
2 CUPF, BP 6570, Faa, Aeroport Tahiti, French Polynesia
3 SRM, BP 20-98713, Papeete Tahiti, French Polynesia
Accepted: 3 December 1999
Whitish parasite-like bodies (PLBs), 0.5–2 μm in size, were detected within the pearl bag of some grafted pearl oysters, Pinctada margaritifera, from Takapoto island (French Polynesia). Histological and ultrastructural investigations have revealed that these bodies consisted of lamellar organic material locally secreted by some epithelial cells of the pearl bag. The fine structure and the formation of these bodies are described. The causes of this abnormal secretion of organic mater, which actually corresponds to periostracum, are not presently known. No parasite nor infectious micro-organism was found associated with the PLBs.
Key words: Pinctada margaritifera / pearl bag / periostracum
© Elsevier, Inra, Ifremer, Cemagref, Ird, Cnrs, 2000