Event Abstract

Energetic cost derived of short-term starvation on marine crustacean Palaemon elegans

  • 1 University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain

Starvation has a major impact on physiological processes in marine plankton and these processes have a major impact on the energy transfer through marine ecosystems. However, quantifying and understanding how starvation changes different aspects of the energy transfer has been retarded because planktologists have largely relied on biomass fractionation to shed light on it. Here, we experiment with the cellular energy allocation approach (CEA index), the respiratory electron transport system activity (ETS), and organic analysis of lipids (Lip), carbohydrates (Carb) and proteins (Prot) to help further our understanding of the energy transfer in the caridean shrimp, Palaemon elegans. We analyzed the effect of 72 hours of starvation using the CEA index that is calculated as the ratio between energy available to energy consumption. It allows us to evaluate the net energy budget (Verslycke and Janssen, 2002). The energy available (Ea) was determined from Lip, Carb, and Prot content, where Ea = Lip + Carb + Prot. Energy consumption (Ec) was calculated from the activity of ETS. All the parameters were transformed into energy equivalents using their respective energy of combustion (Gnaiger, 1983). Proteins were the main energy source (1450.8±355.7 mJ•mgWW-1), followed by lipids (727.2±124.4 mJ•mgWW-1) and carbohydrates (82.1±17.9 mJ•mgWW-1). After 24 hours of starvation, the carbohydrates dropped by 38.2%, a significant decrease. After 48 hours, the proteins had decreased by 36.0%. The lipids were the last to decrease. After 72 hours they had dropped by 42.3%. Adding these organic constituents to calculate the Ea revealed a significant decreasing trend of 34.42% at 72 hours (from 2260.1±485.5 to 1482.3±120.9 mJ•mgWW-1). In contrast, the Ec, as ETS activity, showed a significant increase at 24 hours (from 85.2±16.6 to 158.0±40.4 mJ•h-1•mgWW-1) that stabilized after 72 hours. Overall, the energy balance (Ea/Ec) showed that the energy available was higher than the energy consumption during the experiment. Ea/Ec ratio decreased for the first 24 hours, then remained stable for the next 48 hours. This portrait of energy regulation shows a rapid shift mechanism of P. elegans under sudden adverse conditions.


Gnaiger, E. (1983). ‘Calculation of energetic and biochemical equivalents of respiratory oxygen consumption’, in Polarographic oxygen sensors (Springer), 337–345. Verslycke, T., and Janssen, C. R. (2002). Effects of a changing abiotic environment on the energy metabolism in the estuarine mysid shrimp Neomysis integer (Crustacea: Mysidacea). J. Exp. Mar. Bio. Ecol. 279, 61–72.

Keywords: CEA index, Energy available, energy consumption, Palaemon elegans, Starvation

Conference: XX Iberian Symposium on Marine Biology Studies (SIEBM XX) , Braga, Portugal, 9 Sep - 12 Sep, 2019.

Presentation Type: Poster Presentation

Topic: Ecology, Biodiversity and Vulnerable Ecosystems

Citation: Martinez I, Herrera A, Herrera I, Bondyale-Juez DR, Romero-Kutzner V, Tames-Espinosa M, Packard TT and Gómez Cabrera M (2019). Energetic cost derived of short-term starvation on marine crustacean Palaemon elegans. Front. Mar. Sci. Conference Abstract: XX Iberian Symposium on Marine Biology Studies (SIEBM XX) . doi: 10.3389/conf.fmars.2019.08.00191

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Received: 14 May 2019; Published Online: 27 Sep 2019.

* Correspondence: Mrs. Ico Martinez, University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain, ico.martinez@ulpgc.es