oa African Zoology - Ultrastructure of the accessory venom gland of the puff-adder and effects of nerve stimulation on duct perfusate

Volume 19, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 1562-7020
  • E-ISSN: 2224-073X



The accessory venom gland of the puff-adder consists of an anterior and a posterior region. The former is comprised of columnar mucus-secreting cells which are abundant, and other cells particularly rich in mitochondria; the latter consists of cuboidal mucus�secreting cells and squamous cells of two kinds. Eruption of the cells in the anterior region was observed in the glands of snakes that had been electrically stimulated prior to fixation. The venom duct and accessory glands were perfused while being stimulated electrically. Total protein, chloride concentration and osmolality of the perfusates were analysed but no differences were found in any of the experiments.

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