, Volume 146, Issue 5, pp 943-950
Date: 16 Dec 2004

Variation in protein patterns within and among polychaete sibling species of the genus Marenzelleria (Spionidae): a preliminary survey

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Differences in protein patterns of the soluble protein fraction among the sibling species Marenzelleria viridis (formerly type I) and M. neglecta (formerly type II) were investigated under common environmental conditions using two-dimensional gel electrophoresis (2D-PAGE). Protein expression was determined using general protein staining with Coomassie-blue and compared with radioactive labeling of proteins. In the well-resolved region of stained gels an average of 319 protein spots for M. viridis and 241 spots for M. neglecta could be detected. High sensitivity of radiolabeling allowed separation of an average of 517 and 496 spots for M. viridis and for M. neglecta, respectively. Differences in protein expression between both species could be attributed mainly to qualitative differences in protein patterns. Triplet pattern was used to calculate the genetic similarity of the two species. Thus, 373 protein spots were scored for this analysis; whereas 304 spots were invariant, 36 spots were specific for M. viridis, while 33 spots were specific for M. neglecta. The genetic similarity (F) of the two Marenzelleria sibling species was 0.815. Apart from presence and absence, differences between both species resulted either from slight changes in the isoelectric point or from molecular weight, but rarely from both. Genetic variability was found only among specimens of M. viridis. The experimental conditions to perform two-dimensional electrophoresis for these polychaete species were established for subsequent investigations on a proteomic level. Using 2D-PAGE we expect further insight into the evolutionary adaptation in Marenzelleria spp.

Communicated by O. Kinne, Oldendorf/Luhe