A histological study of emu (Dromaius novaehollandiae) skin

Weir, K. A. and Lunam, C. A. (2004) A histological study of emu (Dromaius novaehollandiae) skin. Journal of Zoology, 264 : 259-266.


Author Weir, K. A.
Lunam, C. A.
Title A histological study of emu (Dromaius novaehollandiae) skin
Journal name Journal of Zoology   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0952-8369
Publication date 2004
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1017/S0952836904005746
Volume 264
Start page 259
End page 266
Total pages 8
Place of publication New York
Publisher Cambridge Univ Press
Language eng
Abstract The skin of the emu Dromaius novaehollandiae is described in its entirety by light microscopy for the first time, therefore providing a basis for comparison with the integument of volant birds. The epidermal and dermal layers have a similar arrangement to other avian species. The concentration of lipid spheres in the basal layer of the epidermis is unique to emus. Although no differences in collagen density with depth of the dermis were observed, collagen bundle diameter is significantly smaller in the stratum superficiale compared to the stratum compactum (P = 0.001). The extensive stratum laxum, comprised predominantly of adipose tissue, may be an evolutionary adaptation to support the large feathers and also enhance insulation against ambient subzero temperatures. Males have a significantly thicker cellular epidermis (P = 0.024) and stratum compactum (P = 0.04) than females. In contrast, females have denser collagen (P = 0.04) within the stratum superficiale and stratum compactum.
Keyword Zoology
emu
Dromoitis novaehollandiae
skin
light microscopy
avian
collagen
Functional Considerations
Integumentary Characters
Lipids
Birds
Phylogeny
Bearing
Aves
Q-Index Code C1

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Excellence in Research Australia (ERA) - Collection
School of Biological Sciences Publications
 
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