Aurelia aurita (Cnidaria) Oocytes' Contact Plate Structure and Development
One of the A. aurita medusa main mesoglea polypeptides, mesoglein, has been described previously. Mesoglein belongs to ZP-domain protein family and therefore we focused on A.aurita oogenesis. Antibodies against mesoglein (AB RA47) stain the plate in the place where germinal epithelium contacts oocyte on the paraffin sections. According to its position, we named the structure found the “contact plate”. Our main instrument was AB against mesoglein. ZP-domain occupies about half of the whole amino acid sequence of the mesoglein. Immunoblot after SDS-PAGE and AU-PAGE reveals two charged and high Mr bands among the female gonad germinal epithelium polypeptides. One of the gonads' polypeptides Mr corresponds to that of mesogleal cells, the other ones' Mr is higher. The morphological description of contact plate formation is the subject of the current work. Two types of AB RA47 positive granules were observed during progressive oogenesis stages. Granules form the contact plate in mature oocyte. Contact plate of A.aurita oocyte marks its animal pole and resembles Zona Pellucida by the following features: (1) it attracts spermatozoids; (2) the material of the contact plate is synthesized by oocyte and stored in granules; (3) these granules and the contact plate itself contain ZP domain protein(s); (4) contact plate is an extracellular structure made up of fiber bundles similar to those of conventional Zona Pellucida.