Electroreceptors (ampullary organs) of the transparent catfish (Kryptopterus bicirrhus) lie in the epidermis, and contain spherical receptor cells that receive purely afferent innervation from the lateral line nerve. Section of this nerve causes rapid degenerative changes to occur in the receptors. Fine structural alterations occur in the receptor cell synapses and nerve fiber 6–12 h postoperatively. Disruption of the receptor cells begins by 18 h and most are lost by 48 h. By 72 h supporting cells and secretory cells also show marked degeneration, and by 96 h they may be totally lost. The rapid degeneration of the electroreceptor organs of Kryptopterus should make them a useful preparation for analysis of neurotrophic functions.

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