F-actin rings are associated with the ring canals of the Drosophila egg chamber

Exp Cell Res. 1985 Apr;157(2):355-63. doi: 10.1016/0014-4827(85)90120-x.


Staining of Drosophila egg chambers with rhodaminyl-lysine-phallotoxin (RLP), a specific stain for F-actin, has demonstrated the presence of dense F-actin rings associated with the inner surfaces of the ring canals. They were first observed in the distal part of the germarium where rings of four different size classes were found, differing in diameter by up to twofold. The ring sizes are considered to correspond to the ring canals formed at each of four successive incomplete cleavages. During the growth of the egg chamber the actin rings were found to increase in diameter from less than 1 micron to approx. 10 micron. Concomitantly a secondary outer ring of more diffuse material is built up in association with the cell membranes. A well developed array of microfilament bundles was also associated with the nurse cell plasmalemma. In stages where the transfer of the bulk of the nurse cell cytoplasm into the oocyte was occurring the rings came closer together in a central area. In late stage chambers the F-actin rings and the microfilament bundles appeared to be incorporated into large irregular masses of actin, which subsequently disappeared as the mature oocyte formed. The F-actin rings are suggested to act as mechanical strengthening elements for the canal plasmalemma, whilst cytoplasmic transport occurs through the ring canals.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Actins / analysis*
  • Animals
  • Cell Membrane / ultrastructure
  • Cytoplasmic Streaming
  • Cytoskeleton / analysis*
  • Cytoskeleton / physiology
  • Cytoskeleton / ultrastructure
  • Drosophila / analysis
  • Drosophila / physiology
  • Drosophila / ultrastructure*
  • Female
  • Oocytes


  • Actins