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Limiting factors to encapsulation: the combined effects of dissolved protein and oxygen availability on embryonic growth and survival of species with contrasting feeding strategies.

The Journal of experimental biology (2009-06-30)
Antonio Brante, Miriam Fernández, Frédérique Viard
ABSTRACT

Encapsulation is a common strategy among marine invertebrate species. It has been shown that oxygen and food availability independently constrain embryo development during intracapsular development. However, it is unclear how embryos of species with different feeding strategies perceive these two constraints when operating jointly. In the present study, we examined the relative importance of dissolved albumen, as a food source, oxygen condition and their interaction on embryonic growth and the survival of two calyptraeid species, Crepidula coquimbensis and Crepidula fornicata, exhibiting different embryo feeding behaviours (i.e. presence vs absence of intracapsular cannibalism). Two oxygen condition treatments (normoxia and hypoxia) and three albumen concentrations (0, 1 and 2 mg l(-1)) were studied. In addition, albumen intake by embryos was observed using fluorescence microscopy. Our study shows that embryos of both species incorporated dissolved albumen but used a different set of embryonic organs. We observed that embryo growth rates in C. coquimbensis were negatively affected only by hypoxic conditions. Conversely, a combination of low albumen concentration and oxygen availability slowed embryo growth in C. fornicata. These findings suggest that oxygen availability is a limiting factor for the normal embryo development of encapsulated gastropod species, regardless of feeding behaviour or developmental mode. By contrast, the effect of dissolved albumen as an alternative food source on embryo performance may depend on the feeding strategy of the embryos.

MATERIALS
Product Number
Brand
Product Description

Sigma-Aldrich
Albumin–fluorescein isothiocyanate conjugate, protein bovine