Highly basophilic plate-shaped regions from oocytes of the surf clam have been examined with the electron microscope. The regions are composed of flat, hollow vesicles perforated by pores arranged, in surface view, in a hexagonal pattern. Cross-sections of this structure show a periodicity consisting of loops (cross-sections of the continuous space within the vesicle) alternating with spaces partly filled with dense material (pores). These structures are shown to resemble closely, the nuclear envelope.
Similarities to and differences from basophilic regions of other cells are discussed and it is suggested that the small granules of Palade (38) are represented by granules composing the walls of the annuli of the nuclear envelope and assumed to be present in the annuli of the vesicles. Because of differences in the structure of these regions from basophilic regions of other cells, the name periodic lamellae is suggested since the structures show periodically repeating substructures (annuli) in both cross-sections and surface views.