Aspects of the Anaerobic Metabolism of Artemia Cysts

  • James S. Clegg
  • Susan A. Jackson
Part of the NATO ASI Series book series (NSSA, volume 174)


Among the many adaptations associated with the rigorous life history of the brine shrimp, Artemia is the striking resistance of the encysted embryo to anaerobiosis. In 1966 Dutrieu and Chrestia-Blanchine[1] reported that these cysts tolerated total anaerobiosis when incubated in sea water for over five months without a decrease in viability[2]. Subsequent work indicated that these anaerobic cysts did not carry out a conventional lactate-producing metabolism and that breakdown of trehalose, the disaccharide serving the energy metabolism of aerobic cysts, could not be detected over an 8 hour period of anoxia[3]. Comprehensive studies of the nucleotide pool by Stocco et al.[4] suggested that utilization of the unusual nucleotide, Gp4G, might provide the free energy presumably required to support the maintenance of anaerobic cysts. Most recently, Hand and Gnaiger[5] used calorimetric methods to show that anaerobic energy metabolism is reduced to only about 2% of aerobic values. Those authors also calculated that the utilization of Gp4G accounted for only about 2% of the heat dissipation taking place during anaerobiosis, and suggested that the very slow catabolism of trehalose might be a more likely explanation for their results. We will present some results of studies designed to test that suggestion.


High Performance Liquid Chromatography Insoluble Fraction Brine Shrimp Oxaloacetic Acid Artemia Cyst 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1989

Authors and Affiliations

  • James S. Clegg
    • 1
  • Susan A. Jackson
    • 1
  1. 1.Bodega Marine LaboratoryUniversity of CaliforniaBodega BayUSA

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