Ionoregulatory Aspects of the Hypoxia-induced Osmorespiratory Compromise in the Euryhaline Atlantic Killifish (Fundulus heteroclitus): The Effects of Salinity

June 10, 2020 | Biology

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First published on the Journal of Experimental Biology, Lab.Equipment brings you this article for your day-to-day Bio industry news fix.

Marina Giacomin, John O. Onukwufor, Patricia M. Schulte, and Chris M. Wood

The osmorespiratory compromise is a physiological trade-off between the characteristics of the gill that promote respiratory gas-exchange and those that limit passive fluxes of ions and water with the environment. In hypoxia, changes in gill blood flow patterns and functional surface area that increase gas transfer can promote an exacerbation in ion and water fluxes. Our goal was to determine whether the osmorespiratory compromise is flexible, depending on environmental salinity (fresh, isosmotic and sea water) and oxygen levels (hypoxia) in euryhaline killifish, Fundulus heteroclitus. Plasma ion concentrations were minimally affected by hypoxia, indicating a maintenance of osmoregulatory homeostasis. In FW-killifish, hypoxia exposure reduced branchial Na+/K+-ATPase and NEM-sensitive-ATPase activities, as well as diffusive water flux rates. Unidirectional Na+ influx and Na+ efflux decreased during hypoxia in FW, but net Na+ flux remained unchanged. Net loss rates of Cl, K+ and ammonia were also attenuated in hypoxia, suggesting both transcellular and paracellular reductions in permeability. These reductions appeared to be regulated phenomena as fluxes were restored immediately in normoxia. Na+ flux rates increased during hypoxia in 11 ppt, but decreased in 35 ppt, the latter suggesting a similar response to hypoxia as in FW. In summary, FW- and SW-killifish experience a reduction in gill permeability, as seen in other hypoxia-tolerant species. Fish acclimated to isosmotic salinity increased Na+ influx and efflux rates, as well as paracellular permeability in hypoxia, respons... Continue reading the entire article at the Journal of Experimental Biology (JEB) Blog.

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