2. National Institute of Industrial Environment and Risks (INERIS), ECOT (In Vitro and In Vivo Ecotoxicology) Unit, UMR-I 02 SEBIO, B.P. 2, 60550 Verneuil-en-Halatte, France.
3. Laboratory of General Biology, UCLy; Laboratory of Reproduction and Development Compare, EPHE; UMRS 449, Catholic University, 10 Place des Archives, 69288 Lyon Cedex 02, France.
Freshwater gastropods are frequently used as model organisms to assess the effects of certain chemical substances. Among them Radix balthica and Lymnaea stagnalis are commonly used in the laboratory, mesocosm and fields tests. In order to determine the effects of pollutants and more particularly endocrine disrupting substances on the reproduction of these organisms, histopathological analyses can be used. Because data are still scarce in the literature, knowledge development on anatomy of reproductive tissues and gametogenesis is a preliminary step before any studies on the impact of contaminants on the reproduction of these gastropods. The characterization of the anatomy and gametogenesis of Radix balthica and Lymnaea stagnalis was thus performed in this study. Important morphological differences exist between the two species. Despite this, the gonads of the two gastropods species have similar histological structure. In both species, spermatogonia are clustered; spermatozoids are anchored in the Sertoli cells and the male cells alternate with the female cells that rest on the epithelium of the hermaphroditic gland. This study is a prerequisite for any further histopathological studies on contaminated individuals.
Keywords: Anatomy, histology, gametogenesis, Radix balthica, Lymnaea stagnalis