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A digital dissection of two teleost fishes: comparative functional anatomy of the cranial musculoskeletal system in pike (Esox lucius) and eel (Anguilla anguilla)

Brocklehurst, R; Porro, L; Herrel, A; Adriaens, D; Rayfield, E; (2019) A digital dissection of two teleost fishes: comparative functional anatomy of the cranial musculoskeletal system in pike (Esox lucius) and eel (Anguilla anguilla). Journal of Anatomy 10.1111/joa.13007. (In press).

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Abstract

Advances in X-ray computed tomography (CT) have led to a rise in the use of non-destructive imaging methods in comparative anatomy. Among these is contrast-enhanced CT scanning, which employs chemical stains to visualize soft tissues. Specimens may then be 'digitally dissected', producing detailed, three-dimensional digital reconstructions of the soft- and hard-tissue anatomy, allowing examination of anatomical structures in situ and making accurate measurements (lengths, volumes, etc.). Here, we apply this technique to two species of teleost fish, providing one of the first comprehensive three-dimensional (3D) descriptions of teleost cranial soft tissue and quantifying differences in muscle anatomy that may be related to differences in feeding ecology. Two species with different feeding ecologies were stained, scanned and imaged to create digital 3D musculoskeletal reconstructions: Esox lucius (Northern Pike), predominantly a suction feeder; and Anguilla anguilla (European eel), which captures prey predominantly by biting. Muscle cross-sectional areas were calculated and compared between taxa, focusing on muscles that serve important roles in feeding. The adductor mandibulae complex - used in biting - was larger in Esox than Anguilla relative to head size. However, the overall architecture of the adductor mandibulae was also very different between the two species, with that of Anguilla better optimized for delivering forceful bites. Levator arcus palatini and sternohyoideus - which are used in suction feeding - are larger in Esox, whereas the levator operculi is larger in Anguilla. Therefore, differences in the size of functionally important muscles do not necessarily correlate neatly with presumed differences in feeding mode.

Type: Article
Title: A digital dissection of two teleost fishes: comparative functional anatomy of the cranial musculoskeletal system in pike (Esox lucius) and eel (Anguilla anguilla)
Location: England
DOI: 10.1111/joa.13007
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1111/joa.13007
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: Teleostei, contrast-enhanced CT, cranial osteology, feeding, myology
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences > Div of Biosciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences > Div of Biosciences > Cell and Developmental Biology
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10077685
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