Hopkins Marine Station Student Paper

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(full paper is archived in the Miller Library)

Title: The effect of Aeolidia papillosa mucus on its anemone prey, Anthopleura elegantissima
Student Author(s): Moynihan, Kristen M.
Pages: 22
Location: Final Papers Biology 175H
Date: June 1988
Keywords: biological studies on gastropods
Abstract: While feeding on the sea anemone, Anthopleura elegantissima, the nudibranch Aeolidia papollosa secretes large amounts of a highly viscous mucus. This mucus elicits a swelling response in the column of A. elegantissima. A elegantissima lean away from areas on which much is applied. This swelling is though to be part of A. elegantissima locomotion. The mucus does not appear to inhibit nematocyst firing in A. elegantissima, instead it actually stimulates firing. In the case of Aeolidia mucus, the anemone's response is likely that of defense, not of predation. Chemical characterization of the Aeolidia mucus shows that it has a molecular weight greater than 12,000 daltons, that it is not heat stable and that it contains several mg/ml of protein.