Garrison, L. P. National Marine Fisheries Service, Northeast Fisheries Science Center, Lance.Garrison@noaa.gov
PHOSPHOLIPID METABOLISM AND RESISTANCE TO STARVATION IN THE ZOEAE OF TWO ESTUARINE CRABS.
Crab zoeae generally hatch with small amounts of energetic reserves and require zooplankton prey for development and survival. Estuarine crabs employ a range of larval dispersal strategies from strong retention of larvae near adult populations to rapid export of larvae and development on the near-shore continental shelf. Zoeae developing in the less productive shelf habitat may be more likely to experience poor food conditions than those retained within the estuary. In this study, I examined the biochemical responses of first-stage zoeae that develop in different larval habitats: Uca minax and Dyspanopeus sayi. The exported species, Uca minax, survived longer under starvation or poor food conditions (phytoplankton diet) than the species that develops within the estuary, Dyspanopeus sayi. Protein and phospholipid metabolism were important aspects of the larval response to starvation. Uca minax more efficiently conserved neutral lipids and essential phospholipids during severe nutritional stress. I propose that the more efficient utilization of essential metabolic reserves reflects an adaptation to the poor nutritional environment encountered in the larval habitat of Uca minax. While neutral lipids provide an essential energy reserve, efficient phospholipid metabolism provides an important safety net in cases of severe nutritional stress.
Day: Thursday, Feb. 4
Time: 10:30 - 10:45am
Location: Eldorado Hotel