The macronucleus in Tokophrya infusionum is composed of numerous Feulgen-positive chromatin bodies (about 0.5 µ in diameter) which appear in thin sections as a dense spongework, homogeneous throughout. The same appearance characterizes metaphase chromosomes of higher forms.

Some chromatin bodies of the macronucleus were found to possess a highly organized structure in certain old organisms. This structure appears in cross-sections as a honeycomb and in longitudinal sections as parallel lines about 120 A in diameter evenly spaced (about 230 A).

As far as is known this is the first time a regular structure has been found in bodies of chromosomal character at the dimensional level presently explored by electron microscopy. The demonstration that OsO4 can preserve order in chromatin material is another significant aspect of these findings.

This content is only available as a PDF.