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The fine structure of the alimentary canal, especially the midgut and hindgut of Lepidocampa weberi (Diplura: Campodeidae) is described. The general organization of the canal is similar to that of Campodea. The midgut epithelium is composed of columnar apical microvillated cells. Each nucleus contains a single intranuclear crystal. Close to the pyloric region, the posterior midgut cells are devoid of microvilli and intranuclear crystals. There is no special pyloric chamber as in Protura or pyloric cuticular ring as in Collembola but a morphological transformation from midgut to hindgut cells. Eight globular Malpighian papillae, consisting of distal microvillated cells and flat proximal cells, open into the gut lumen via ducts formed by hindgut cells. The structure of the hindgut is complicated and can be divided into three segments. The anterior hindgut cells have an irregular shape and compact cytoplasm. A striking interdigitation between the large bottle‐shaped epithelial cells and longitudinal muscle cells occurs in the middle segment of the hindgut. The thick cuticle gives rise to long spikes projecting into the gut lumen. The posterior hindgut cells possess the morphological features for water reabsorption. Some hypotheses are advanced about the function of the different regions of the gut. 1990 The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences

Original publication




Journal article


Acta Zoologica

Publication Date





201 - 209