SS4.07 Lipids/Fatty Acids in Ecological Research
Date: Tuesday, June 11, 2002
Time: 2:15:00 PM
Location: Saanich
 
LeeRF, Skidaway Institute of Oceanography, Savannah, USA, dick@skio.peachnet.edu
 
ROLE OF STORAGE LIPID IN MARINE ZOOPLANKTON
image
Lipids play several important roles in the life history of marine zooplankton. In the ovary, oocytes accumulate lipid stores associated with lipid droplets and lipovitellin. These lipids provide energy to the developing embryos. Oil sacs filled with liquid triacylglycerols or wax esters are a common feature of copepods from high latitudes and upwelling areas. Other zooplankton groups store lipids in the hepatopancreas or digestive glands. Several high latitude copepods species undergo winter diapause in deep waters utilizing lipid stores built up during spring/summer phytoplankton blooms. While zooplankton from tropical and sub-tropical regions generally have small amounts of storage lipids, these lipids can still play an important role during reproduction, as well as providing energy during brief starvation periods. Storage lipids identified in marine zooplankton include triacylglycerols, wax esters, diacylglycerols and phosphatidyl choline. Besides using standard analytical techniques (thin-layer chromatography with flame ionization detection, gas-liquid chromatography), lipid droplet quantitation can be carried out by lipid volume determine of oil sacs and lipid specific staining in combination with microscopy/photometry.