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Faculty Sponsor

Dr. Ahmed Mustafa

Department/Program

Department of Biology

University Affiliation

Indiana University – Purdue University Fort Wayne

Abstract

Marine invertebrates such as shrimp, sea urchins, and sea cucumbers are becoming increasingly important in aquaculture not only because of the demand for a sustainable source of protein but also for the development of alternative medicines. These invertebrate species, like their vertebrate counterparts, also encounter stress during propagation due to handling and changes in their environment. To study the impact of two conditions of potentially aquaculture related stress such as, low salinity and handling, a variety of physiological and immunological tests were conducted on the hemal fluid of the sea urchin Stronglyocentrotus purpurtatus, using a 72 hour experimental period. Results from these tests are now being analyzed and it appears that sea urchins kept in water with low salinity (28 ppt) and handled frequently (3 times daily for about 5 minutes each), have higher levels of hemal protein and coelomocyte counts (total and differential cells) and lower levels of coelomocyte phagocytosis (phagocytic capacity and respiratory burst activity) as well as lytic activity (lysozyme turbidity), compared to the controls (kept at 34 ppt and not given any handling stress).

Disciplines

Biology | Life Sciences

Physiological and Immunological Responses of Sea Urchins Exposed to Low Salinity and Handling Stress

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