Hopkins Marine Station Student Paper

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(full paper is archived in the Miller Library)

Title: The source of iridescence: a morphological and ultrastructual study of the iridophore cell in Sepiateuthis lessoniana
Student Author(s): Rawa, Agnieszka D.
Faculty Advisor(s): Thompson, Stuart
Pages: 17
Location: Final Papers Biology 175H
Date: June 1991
Abstract: Iridophores in Sepiateuthis lessoniana were studied by light microscopic and ultrastructural techniques in order to identify the component of the cell responsible for iridescence. The thin film interference was considered as a possible explanation for iridescence. This hypothesis was rejected when the source of iridescence was isolated and identified as a diffraction grating. These results suggest that the dorsal iridophores could vary their degree of iridescence by changing the conformation or spacing of the grooves making up the grating.