The Occurrence and Significance of Phenolic Hardening in the Newly Formed Cuticle of Crustacea decapoda

R. Dennell

Abstract

Chemical tests have shown the resemblance of the amber-coloured epicuticle and pigmented zone of the fully formed cuticle of Crustacea Decapoda to the exocuticle of insects. The newly formed cuticle possesses a polyphenol oxidase like that found in the epicuticle of insects, and this, together with the previously recorded presence of a tyrosinase system in the blood, supports the view that a tanning action takes place at the time of moulting. It is therefore possible to establish clearly the homology of the crustacean cuticle with that of insects, and it is suggested that the changes taking place in the new cuticle have the effect of limiting its permeability.

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