An ultrahigh-speed analysis of exocytosis: nematocyst discharge

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Science  24 Feb 1984:
Vol. 223, Issue 4638, pp. 830-833
DOI: 10.1126/science.6695186


High-speed microcinematography of nematocyst discharge in Hydra attenuata Pall. shows that this specialized exocytosis, which appears to result from an increase in the intracapsular pressure, requires a total of about 3 milliseconds. A maximum velocity of 2 meters per second is generated, corresponding to an acceleration of 40,000g. Thus nematocyst discharge is one of the fastest cellular processes in nature.