University of Oulu

Meyer-Rochow, V. B., & Yamahama, Y. (2022). An anatomical and ultrastructural study of the eye of the luminescent millipede Paraspirobolus lucifugus (Gervais 1836) (Diplopoda, Spirobolida, Spiroboleliidae). In Arthropod Structure & Development (Vol. 69, p. 101171). Elsevier BV.

An anatomical and ultrastructural study of the eye of the luminescent millipede Paraspirobolus lucifugus (Gervais 1836) (Diplopoda, Spirobolida, Spiroboleliidae)

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Author: Meyer-Rochow, Victor Benno1,2; Yamahama, Yumi3
Organizations: 1Department of Genetics and Physiology, Department of Ecology and Genetics, Oulu, Finland
2Department of Plant Medicals, Andong National University, Andong, 36729, Republic of Korea
3Department of Biology, Hamamatsu University School of Medicine, Hamamatsu, 431-3192, Japan
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 5 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Elsevier, 2022
Publish Date: 2023-10-20


The two forward-looking eyes and their ultrastructural organization of an 18 mm long adult bioluminescent female millipede (Paraspirobolus lucifugus) were investigated by transmission electron microscopy and energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy. Each eye contained approximately 23 ommatidia with 50–60 μm wide and 80 um thick corneal lenses that contained calcium and silicon and proximally ended in truncated flat surfaces of around 20 μm in diameter. A maximally 28 μm thick and 25 μm long rhabdom, made up of at least 12–14 retinula cells and a 4 μm thick sleeve of screening pigment granules in a light-adapted position was present. Compared with the eyes of non-luminescent julid millipede species, those of P.lucifugus share their basic anatomy, but also exhibit features like the wide possible binocular frontal visual overlap, somewhat narrower interommatidial angles combined with relatively larger rhabdoms, which suggests that P.lucifugus has more efficient eyes and makes greater use of its photoreceptors. P.lucifugus is negatively phototactic and strictly nocturnal and its activity rhythm is apparently governed by a circadian clock.

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Series: Arthropod structure & development
ISSN: 1467-8039
ISSN-E: 1873-5495
ISSN-L: 1467-8039
Volume: 69
Article number: 101171
DOI: 10.1016/j.asd.2022.101171
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 1181 Ecology, evolutionary biology
Funding: VBM-R acknowledges the support received from Chuleui Jung via the Basic Science Research Program of the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) funded by the Ministry of Education (NRF-2018R1A6A1A03024862) to complete this study.
Copyright information: © 2022 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Ltd. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (