Wound repair in the marine worm Sipunculus nudus (Sipunculidae)


  • G D’Ancona Lunetta Institute of Histology and Embryology University of Palermo, Italy


marine worm, Sipunculus nudus, wound repair, cytokines


The cells and molecules involved in the wound healing of Sipunculus nudus were studied. An incision,
5 mm in length, was cut longitudinally at a site opposite the anus and 10 mm from the introvert. The
histological study performed at different times showed an involvement of both Type I and Type II
granulocytes in the process of healing. The former were capable of extracellular digestion and they
were immunoreactive to anti-IL-4, -IL-10 and -epidermal growth factor (EGF) antibodies (Abs); the latter were involved in the synthesis of connective tissue from 24 h after the incision, thereby causing
the initial closing of the wound. After 70 h, a continuous layer of Type II granulocytes was found on the sides of the wound where the future muscle tissue would be formed; many of these granulocytes had been partially degranulated. It was not possible to establish any existing relationship between the functions of Type I granulocytes and their reactivity to anti-IL-4, -IL-10 and -EGF Abs.






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