, Volume 846, Issue 1, pp 27–38 | Cite as

Proteomic analysis in the model organism Daphnia has the potential to unravel molecular pathways involved in phenotypic changes in response to changing environmental conditions

  • Kathrin A. Otte
  • Christoph Effertz
  • Thomas Fröhlich
  • Georg J. Arnold
  • Christian LaforschEmail author
  • Eric von Elert


The crustacean genus Daphnia holds a key position in aquatic ecosystems rendering it an important model organism in environmental research. Its enormous sensitivity to environmental changes is often accompanied by complex plastic responses resulting in different phenotypes from the same genetic background. This plasticity enables Daphnia to survive in heterogeneous environments. The molecular underpinning of these responses are of general interest as they may not only reveal mechanisms of plastic adaptation but also help to predict the impact of global environmental changes. Proteomics is especially suitable to analyse such molecular mechanisms, as proteins are the functional key players of most biochemical processes. In this review, we highlight crucial methodological steps for performing high-quality Daphnia proteomics. Furthermore, we report proteome studies which are able to link genotype and phenotype for a variety of plastic traits, emphasizing the great potential of Daphnia as a model organism for studying the effects of fluctuating and changing environments.


Daphnia Proteomics Molecular mechanisms Phenotypic plasticity 



Funding was provided by European Science Foundation (Grant No. STRESSFLEA).


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kathrin A. Otte
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
    • 5
  • Christoph Effertz
    • 4
  • Thomas Fröhlich
    • 3
  • Georg J. Arnold
    • 3
  • Christian Laforsch
    • 2
    Email author
  • Eric von Elert
    • 4
  1. 1.Department Biology IILudwig Maximilians University MunichPlanegg-MartinsriedGermany
  2. 2.Animal Ecology I and BayCEERUniversity of BayreuthBayreuthGermany
  3. 3.Laboratory for Functional Genome Analysis (LAFUGA), Gene CenterLudwig-Maximilians-University MunichMunichGermany
  4. 4.Zoological Institute, Aquatic Chemical EcologyUniversity of CologneCologneGermany
  5. 5.Institut für Populationsgenetik, Vetmeduni ViennaViennaAustria

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