Morphological changes of the optic lobe from late embryonic to adult stages in oval squids Sepioteuthis lessoniana

Yung Chieh Liu, Wen Sung Chung, Chun Chieh Yu, Su Ting Hsu, Fung Lan Chan, Tsung Han Liu, Chia Hao Su, Yeukuang Hwu, N. Justin Marshall, Chuan Chin Chiao*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Article peer-review

9 Scopus citations


The optic lobe is the largest brain area within the central nervous system of cephalopods and it plays important roles in the processing of visual information, the regulation of body patterning, and locomotive behavior. The oval squid Sepioteuthis lessoniana has relatively large optic lobes that are responsible for visual communication via dynamic body patterning. It has been observed that the visual behaviors of oval squids change as the animals mature, yet little is known about how the structure of the optic lobes changes during development. The aim of the present study was to characterize the ontogenetic changes in neural organization of the optic lobes of S. lessoniana from late embryonic stage to adulthood. Magnetic resonance imaging and micro-CT scans were acquired to reconstruct the 3D-structure of the optic lobes and examine the external morphology at different developmental stages. In addition, optic lobe slices with nuclear staining were used to reveal changes in the internal morphology throughout development. As oval squids mature, the proportion of the brain making up the optic lobes increases continuously, and the optic lobes appear to have a prominent dent on the ventrolateral side. Inside the optic lobe, the cortex and the medulla expand steadily from the late embryonic stage to adulthood, but the cell islands in the tangential zone of the optic lobe decrease continuously in parallel. Interestingly, the size of the nuclei of cells within the medulla of the optic lobe increases throughout development. These findings suggest that the optic lobe undergoes continuous external morphological change and internal neural reorganization throughout the oval squid's development. These morphological changes in the optic lobe are likely to be responsible for changes in the visuomotor behavior of oval squids from hatching to adulthood.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)75-85
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Morphology
Issue number1
StatePublished - 01 2018
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.


  • cell islands
  • cephalopods
  • neural connections
  • ontogenetic development
  • visuomotor control


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