Indexed on: 19 Oct '12Published on: 19 Oct '12Published in: Microscopy Research and Technique
Environmental factors can influence the reproductive rates in bats, and since morphometric information of bats testis is scarce, we aimed to compare the organization and quantification of the intertubular components in the testes of the bat Molossus molossus, collected in different seasons. Testicular histological sections were evaluated using light and electron microscopy. The intertubular compartment occupied an average 10% of the testes, being predominately constituted of Leydig cells (LC). The percentages of the testes occupied by the intertubular compartment and by LC were significantly higher in summer, while the other intertubular components did not vary significantly among the seasons. As suspected under light microscopy, the ultrastructural analysis confirmed the existence of multinucleated LC during winter. The increase in the nuclear percentage of LC in winter seems to have caused the decrease of the cytoplasmatic measurements in that season, as well as in the volume of LC. The highest cytoplasmatic values and volume of LC registered in the spring, summer, and fall can be related to greater activity of this cell in these seasons. The higher investment in intertubular tissue and in LC observed in summer, compared to winter; suggest an increase in the steroidogenic capacity of this bat during summer. The analyses correlating testicular morphometry and abiotic environmental factors in this study confirm the influence of climatic factors on the reproduction of M. molossus.