The morphogenesis of the sexually indifferent gonad of the primate Galago crassicaudatus crassicaudatus was studied by high‐resolution light microscopy and electron microscopy in 15 embryos aged 26 to 33 days. Onset of gonadal development follows the morphogenesis of the mesonephros by a conspicuous interval and is identified as the time when the first primordial germinal cells arrive in the region ventral to the central third of the mesonephros; this is followed by intense proliferation of the coelomic mesothelial cells lining the area. They become organized into short piles that deepen in the underlying mesenchyme, enclosing the germinal cells in the process. Rapidly, the piles become confluent forming a compact mass, the gonadal blastema, which is soon cleaved into gonadal cords by stroma and vascular lacunae. The mesonephros becomes involved in the morphogenesis of the gonad only in late stages of development when anatomic continuities become established between the capsules of its regressing glomeruli and the elongating gonadal rete cords. These observations show that in the Galago the somatic cells of the gonadal blastema, i.e., the precursors of the definitive testicular and ovarian sustentacular cells, derive from the coelomic mesothelium in contrast to other mammals, e.g., ruminants and rodents, where they are of mesonephric derivation. This important point is discussed in light of the differences that exist among species with regard to the structural complexity, functionality, and stages of differentiation/ involution of their mesonephroi on the one hand, and the time of gonadal development on the other.
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