Osmoregulation in Paramecium: the locus of fluid segregation in the contractile vacuole complex
Journal of Cell Science
In a previous study, monoclonal antibody DS-1 was found to specifically label the decorated spongiome along the radial arms of the contractile vacuole complexes in Paramecium multimicronucleatum. Fluorescein isothiocyanate-conjugated DS-1, when injected into cells, labels the radial arms initially, but with increasing postinjection time both the intensity of fluorescence and the number of fluorescently labeled radial arms were reduced. When these cells were fixed after 45 minutes and probed
... rectly using a second fluorochrome, little new label was seen on the already fluorescein-labeled radial arms. Thin sections showed that the amount of decorated tubules along some collecting canals decreased from the proximal to the distal end and vesicles, which were never seen in control cells, appeared next to the decorated spongiome. These results suggested that the decorated spongiome was undergoing disassembly and sequestration into one region of the cell. The injected DS-1 also reduced the expulsion frequency of the contractile vacuoles in a dose-, time- and site-dependent manner. The contractile vacuole complexes near the injection site were affected more than those farther from the site, but the sizes of both contractile vacuoles were only transiently affected so that fluid output per cell was reduced by approximately 60%. Beyond 45 minutes postinjection, both the expulsion frequency and total fluid output began to recover as the DS-1 was sequestered into one part of the cell. This region persisted in cells up to 18 hours but disappeared by 24 hours, which coincided with the full recovery of the expulsion frequency and of decorated spongiome along the radial arms. The contractile vacuole, the collecting canals and the smooth spongiome were morphologically unaffected. These results indicate that when the decorated spongiome is dissociated from the contractile vacuole complex, the complex's function is strongly inhibited, showing the decorated spongiome to be the site of fluid segregation.