Zoological Studies

Vol. 53, 2014

Development of the sea urchins Temnopleurus toreumaticus Leske, 1778 and Temnopleurus reevesii Gray, 1855 (Camarodonta: Temnopleuridae)

Chisato Kitazawa1*, Chikara Sakaguchi1, Hajime Nishimura1, Chiaki Kobayashi1, Tomomi Baba1 and Akira Yamanaka2

1Biological Institute, Faculty of Education, Yamaguchi University, Yoshida 1677-1, Yamaguchi 753-8513, Japan
2Department of Applied Molecular Bioscience, Graduate School of Medicine, Yamaguchi University, Yoshida 1677-1, Yamaguchi 753-8512, Japan

Background: Sea urchin larvae near metamorphosis form an adult rudiment that is a complex of the juvenile structures. However, the details of the mechanisms that form the adult rudiment are unknown. The temnopleurid sea urchins Temnopleurus toreumaticus and Temnopleurus reevesii occur in Japan, but the development of their juvenile morphology has not been described. In this study, we observed their development by light and scanning electron microscopy to follow the adult rudiment formation and to consider the mechanisms of evolution of juvenile morphology in sea urchins.
The prism embryos of both species formed two primary pore canals that elongated from the left and right coelomic sacs; the left canal connected the presumptive water vascular system to the hydropore. These organs were formed bilaterally and symmetrically in T. toreumaticus and with left-right asymmetry in T. reevesii. The right canal of both species had degenerated by the four-armed larval stage. At the prism stage, about six cells from the left oral ectoderm located between the left post-oral arm and the oral lobe formed a cell mass. The cell mass grew in diameter stepwise in T. toreumaticus by cell migration and by the formation of an epithelial pouch during the four- to six-armed larval stages and more rapidly in T. reevesii by the formation of a thin epithelium during the six-armed larval stage. In both species, the adult rudiment was formed by attachment of the cell mass to the hydrocoel. The larvae of T. toreumaticus metamorphosed from a tiny hole on the left ectoderm between the post-oral and postero-dorsal arms.
Conclusions: These findings suggest that the developmental process involving the formation of two primary pore canals and a cell mass may have been acquired and conserved as common traits in the early development of indirect-developing temnopleurid species during evolutionary divergence from the Cidaroida.

Key words: Temnopleurid sea urchins; Temnopleurus toreumaticus; T. reevesii; primary pore canal; cell mass; adult rudiment.

*Correspondence: E-mail: chisak@yamaguchi-u.ac.jp