Author(s): Littlefield CL, Littlefield CL
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Abstract Single clones of interstitial cells were generated and analyzed to determine if one interstitial cell has the capacity to differentiate both somatic and germ cells. Such clones were produced by using hydroxyurea to selectively eliminate interstitial cells from normal Hydra oligactis males. The number of animals devoid of interstitial cells within the population was determined by staining whole animals with toluidine blue which renders the interstitial cells visible. The number of animals containing single clones of interstitial cells was then estimated using single hit Poisson statistics. In treatments which rendered 60-80\% of the population devoid of interstitial cells, the majority of the animals containing interstitial cells lost the ability to produce somatic cells, including nerves and nematocytes, but retained the capacity to produce sperm. This result strongly suggests the presence of a separate germ line in hydra.
This article was published in Dev Biol
and referenced in Biological Systems: Open Access