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Bioaccumulation and role of UV-absorbing compounds in two marine crustacean species from Patagonia, Argentina

Abstract

Experiments were conducted during summer and winter, 2000, and summer 2001 to determine the bioaccumulation and role of UV-absorbing compounds in two crustacean species—the amphipod Amphitoe valida and the isopod Idothea baltica—from the mid-littoral of the Patagonia coast (Argentina). Macroalgae constituting the diet for these species differed in the concentration of UV-absorbing compounds, from high amounts in the rhodophyte Polysiphonia sp. to almost null in chlorophyte species (i.e., Enteromorpha sp. and Codium sp.). Consequently, transferring and bioaccumulation of these compounds, identified as the mycosporine-like amino acids (MAAs) Porphyra-334 and Shinorine, varied in the crustaceans according to their algal diet, being high when feeding on Polysiphonia sp. Survival experiments carried out with crustaceans feeding on poor and rich-MAA diets demonstrated that the role of these compounds in A. valida and I. baltica was different. In A. valida, and based on a significantly higher survival in those individuals feeding on the rhodophyte, MAAs seem to provide an effective protection against UV-B radiation (280–320 nm). In I. baltica, mortality was not significantly different in individuals feeding on rich and poor MAA diets. However, judging from the comparatively high amounts of MAAs in eggs/embryos, these compounds might provide protection to the progeny rather than to adult organisms.

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Walter Helbling, E., Fernando Menchi, C. & Villafañe, V.E. Bioaccumulation and role of UV-absorbing compounds in two marine crustacean species from Patagonia, Argentina. Photochem Photobiol Sci 1, 820–825 (2002). https://doi.org/10.1039/b206584c

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