Advertisement

Journal of Chemical Ecology

, Volume 24, Issue 1, pp 13–22 | Cite as

Uric Acid: The Sperm-Release Pheromone of the Marine Polychaete Platynereis dumerilii

  • Erich Zeeck
  • Tilman Harder
  • Manfred Beckmann
Article

Abstract

In the marine polychaete, Platynereis dumerilii, reproductive behavior in the two sexes is synchronized by the consecutive discharge of male and female sex-specific pheromones. After the female releases the eggs into the free water column, immediate fertilization is achieved by several males circling around the eggs emitting sperm clouds. We report the isolation and identification of the sperm-release pheromone present in the coelomic fluid of sexually mature females. Each step in isolation was guided by bioassay. Isolation methods included extraction and solvent partitioning and separation methods included ultrafiltration and high-performance liquid chromatography. Uric acid was identified as the sperm-release pheromone that is discharged by the female with release of the eggs. The threshold concentration for sperm release by males was determined as 0.6 μM.

Sex pheromone sperm release egg release uric acid purine reproduction polychaete Annelida Platynereis dumerilii coelomic fluid 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

REFERENCES

  1. Boilly-Marer, Y. 1974. Etude expérimentale du comportement nuptial de Platynereis dumerilii Aud. et M. Edw. (Annelida, Polychaeta): Chemoréception, émission des produits génitaux. Mar. Biol. 24:167–169.Google Scholar
  2. Boilly-Marer, Y. 1986. Sex pheromones in the marine polychaete Platynereis dumerilii, pp. 494–498, in M. Porchet, J. C. Andries, and A. Dhainaut (eds.). Advances in Invertebrate Reproduction IV. Elsevier, Amsterdam.Google Scholar
  3. Boland, W., Jakoby, K., and Jaenicke, L. 1981. Receptor specificity and threshold concentration in chemotaxis of the Phaeophyte Culteria multifida. Z. Naturforsch. 36c:262–271.Google Scholar
  4. Brante, G. 1949. Iodine as a means of development in paper chromatography. Nature 163:651–652.Google Scholar
  5. Harder, T. 1996. Isolation und Strukturaufklärung eines Sexualpheromons des marinen Polychaeten Platynereis dumerilii (Annelida, Polychaeta). Thesis, Department of Chemistry, CvO-University of Oldenburg, Oldenburg, Germany.Google Scholar
  6. Hauenschild, C. 1956. Neue experimentelle Untersuchungen zum Problem der Lunarperiodizität. Naturwissenschaften 16:361–363.Google Scholar
  7. Hauenschild, C., and Fischer, A. 1969. Platynereis dumerilii, Mikroskopische Anatomie, Fortpflanzung, Entwicklung, pp. 2–6, in Grosses zoologisches Praktikum 10b. Gustav Fischer Verlag, Stuttgart.Google Scholar
  8. Kittredge, J. S., Terry, M., and Takahashi, F. T. 1971. Sex pheromone activity of the molting hormone crustecdysone on male crabs (Pachygrapsus cassipes, Cancer antennarius, and Cancer anthonyi). Fish. Bull. 69:337–343.Google Scholar
  9. Lifshitz, C., Bergmann, E. D., and Sheinok, U. 1968. The mass spectra of some purines and related compounds. Israel J. Chem. 6:827–831.Google Scholar
  10. Pfleiderer, W. 1974. Synthese, Struktur und Eigenschaften der Harnsäure sowie ihrer N-Methylderivate. Justus Liebigs Ann. Chem. 12:2030–2045.Google Scholar
  11. Reindel, F., and Hoppe, W. 1954. Über eine Färbmethode zum Anfärben von Aminosäuren, Peptiden und Proteinen auf Papierchromatogrammen und Papierelektropherogrammen. Chem. Ber. 8:1103–1107.Google Scholar
  12. Rittschoff, D., Forward, R. B., and Mott, D. D. 1985. Larval release in the crab Rhithropanopeus harrisii (Gould): Chemical cues from hatching eggs. Chem. Senses 10:567–577.Google Scholar
  13. Rittschoff, D., Forward, R. B., Simons, D. A., Reddy, P. A., and Erickson, B. W. 1989. Peptide analogs of the mud crab pumping pheromone: Structure-function studies. Chem. Senses 14:137–148.Google Scholar
  14. Zeeck, E., Hardege, J. D., Bartels-Hardege, H., and Wesselmann, G. 1988. Sex pheromone in a marine polychaete: Determination of the chemical structure. J. Exp. Zool. 246:285–292.Google Scholar
  15. Zeeck, E., Harder, T., Beckmann, M., and MÜller, C. T. 1996. Marine gamete release pheromones. Nature 382:214.Google Scholar
  16. Zeeck, E., MÜller, C. T., Beckmann, M., Hardege, J. D., Papke, U., Sinnwell, V., Schroeder, F. C., and Francke, W. 1998. Cysteine-glutathione disulfide, the sperm release pheromone of the marine polychaete Nereis succinea (Annelida: Polychaeta). Chemoecology, accepted.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • Erich Zeeck
    • 1
  • Tilman Harder
    • 1
  • Manfred Beckmann
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute for Chemistry and Biology of the Marine Environment (ICBM) and Department of ChemistryCarl von Ossietzky-University of OldenburgOldenburgGermany

Personalised recommendations