Some systematic implications of the antigenicity of external mucus from British lampreys.

  • Elizabeth Anne Pass

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisPhD


This thesis outlines the phylogeny, distribution, biology and life histories of lampreys, with particular reference to the identification of British lampreys. Immunological techniques of identification were explored, using the external mucus and other antigens, and the results discussed, The implications of the results for the taxonomy of the lampreys led to field observations of their spawning behaviour which is described. The identification of Petromyzon marinus presents no difficulties, but the difference between Lampetra fluviatilis and L. planeri is so small as to cast doubts on their taxonomic status as species, In view of these doubts, species concepts, isolating mechanisms and modes of speciation are discussed, particularly as they relate to possible mechanisms of lamprey speciation, Models of the derivation of non-parasitic lampreys from their 'paired' parasitic forms are suggested and discussed, Ways of testing the models by hybridisation and marking experiments are proposed.
Date of Award1971
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • University of Bath

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