Hopkins Marine Station Student Paper

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(full paper is archived in the Miller Library)

Title: Comparison of metabolic potentials of cold seep clams (genus Calyptogena) occuring in varying sulfide environments
Student Author(s): Holl, Justin Dodds
Faculty Advisor(s): Somero, George N.
Pages: 13
Location: Final Papers Biology 175H
Date: June 1996
Abstract: The metabolic potentials of two Monterey submarine canyon cold seep clam species, Calyptogena kilmeri and C. pacifica, were compared using two enzymes involved in ATP generation: citrate synthase (CS), used in aerobiosis, and malate dehydrogenase (MDH), primarily used in anaerobiosis. Although both species live in high sulfide environments, C. Kilmeri experiences a significantly higher sulfide concentration than C. pacifica (>6 mM sulfide vs. 0.1 mM sulfide). MDH and CS assays were conducted on foot, gill, mantle, and adductor tissues from both species. Calyptogena kilmeri was found to have lower CS activity and higher MDH activity than C. pacifica. The lower CS activity in C. kilmeri suggests that the near anoxic environment caused by high sulfide concentrations suppresses aerobic metabolism, favoring a high anaerobic metabolic potential in this species.