Some morphological aspects of fertilization in tilapias

O. Bern, R. R. Avtalion

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14 Scopus citations


The relationship between the specific anatomy of tilapia gametes and their function was studied in the sequence of events which follow artifical fertilization. Scanning electron microscopic observations showed that some events of the fertilization process, involving spermatozoon migration through the micropylar canal until reaching the villous plasma membrane of the eggs and its penetration into the egg cytoplasm, occur very rapidly (fractions of a second). However, the spermatozoon tail remains outside for about 1–2 min. Then, following the zygote formation and the elevation of the chorion after its separation from the plasma membrane, numerous sperm cells could be found in the vicinity of the micropyle. This cell mass, which seemed to be trapped by a network of microfilaments, was suggested to be the result of the evacuation of excess sperm cells throughout the micropylar canal. The significance of these results for sperm and egg plasma membrane interaction and for prevention of polyspermy are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)375-381
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Fish Biology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1990


  • Keywords: artificial fertilization
  • fish egg
  • fish sperm
  • micropyle
  • plasma membrane
  • polyspermy


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