Cubomedusae


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Cubomedusae

[¦kyü·bo·mə′dü·sē]
(invertebrate zoology)
An order of cnidarians in the class Scyphozoa distinguished by a cubic umbrella.
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At the same time, the presence of diffuse nerve networks in cubomedusae argues that the development of this apparent centralization is superimposed on the scyphozoan-like plan in which diffuse nerve networks are utilized for distribution of motor commands and for conduction of some forms of sensory information.
Organization of the ectodermal nervous structures in medusae: cubomedusae.
The a-tubulin-IR swim motor nerve net is a major component of the peripheral nervous system in cubomedusae.
The rhopalia of cubomedusae exhibited such dense tubulin staining that individual neurites were impossible to distinguish.
Each muscle sheet in the swim system of cubomedusae serves a different role in effective locomotion.
Neurites appear to occasionally travel in bundles, at least in larger cubomedusae such as adult Carybdea, and thus our measurements of neurite density in Carybdea may be underestimates, and measurements of neuron diameter, overestimates.
Four species of cubomedusae were examined: Tamoya haplonema Muller 1859, Carybdea marsupialis (Linne 1758), Chiropsalmus quadrumanus (Muller 1859), and Tripedalia cystophora Conant 1897.
Invaginated synapses in the lensed eyes of cubomedusae differ from known types of synapses found in other cnidarians.
Although vesicle densities were not measured in this study, it is possible that an increase in surface area, due to the invagination in cubomedusae, could reflect a greater synaptic efficacy than flat cnidarian synapses, which typically have few vesicles (Westfall, 1987).
Similarly, cubomedusae turn by altering the shape of the velarium (Gladfelter, 1973), but the mechanism of muscular control is unknown, although the structure of the velarial frenula may provide a clue.
In cubomedusae, however, directional nozzle formation requires asymmetrical enhancement of swim muscle contraction in the velarium.
FMRF-amide-immunoreactive neuronal structures have been found in cubomedusae, but they are largely restricted to the rhopalia, nerve ring, tentacles, and manubrium (Coates and Satterlie, in prep.