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Figueras A.,CSIC - Institute of Marine Research
Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology | Year: 2012

The zebrafish (Danio rerio) has been extensively used in biomedical research as a model to study vertebrate development and hematopoiesis and recently, it has been adopted into varied fields including immunology. After fertilization, larvae survive with only the innate immune responses because adaptive immune system is morphologically and functionally mature only after 4-6 weeks postfertilization. This temporal separation provides a suitable system to study the vertebrate innate immune response in vivo, independently from the adaptive immune response. The transparency of early life stages allows a useful real-time visualization. Adult zebrafish which have complete (innate and adaptative) immune systems offer also advantages over other vertebrate infection models: small size, relatively rapid life cycle, ease of breeding, and a growing list of molecular tools for the study of infectious diseases. In this review, we have tried to give some examples of the potential of zebrafish as a valuable model in innate immunity and inflammation studies.

Wyatt T.,CSIC - Institute of Marine Research
Deep-Sea Research Part II: Topical Studies in Oceanography | Year: 2014

Margalef's mandala maps phytoplankton species into a phase space defined by turbulence (A) and nutrient concentrations (Ni); these are the hard axes. The permutations of high and low A and high and low Ni divide the space into four domains. Soft axes indicate some ecological dynamics. A main sequence shows the normal course of phytoplankton succession; the r-K axis of MacArthur and Wilson runs parallel to it. An alternative successional sequence leads to the low A-high Ni domain into which many red tide species are mapped. Astronomical and biological time are implicit. A mathematical transformation of the mandala (rotation) links it to the classical bloom models of Sverdrup (time) and Kierstead and Slobodkin (space).Both rarity and the propensity to form red tides are considered to be species characters, meaning that maximum population abundance can be a target of natural selection. Equally, both the unpredictable appearance of bloom species and their short-lived appearances may be species characters. There may be a correlation too between these features and long-lived dormant stages in the life-cycle;s then the vegetative planktonic phase is the 'weak link' in the life-cycle. Red tides are thus due to species which have evolved suites of traits which result in specific demographic strategies. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.

Babarro J.M.F.,CSIC - Institute of Marine Research | Abad M.J.,Grupo de Polimeros CIT
Marine Ecology Progress Series | Year: 2013

The co-existence patterns of 2 mytilid species were studied in order to evaluate the performance of the alien mussel Xenostrobus securis and the indigenous Mytilus galloprovincialis through monospecific and mixed co-habiting experiments in the Ría de Vigo (northwest Spain). Mytilus galloprovincialis was found to be the best performer in all tests. Shell growth was ∼4-fold greater for the indigenous mussel when deployed without interspecific competition and regardless of density. Differences in shell growth were found to be similar within mixed populations wherein M. galloprovincialis showed greater ability for upward migratory movements on the mixed beds and distanced itself from the mud influenced layer. The alien X. securis, however, was found to inhabit underneath the M. galloprovincialis layer, which resulted in higher mortality rates. Species-specific features such as byssus filaments and lifestyle may account for such different behaviour. M. galloprovincialis secreted thicker and stronger shells and byssus regardless of their density in both monospecific and mixed experiments. This might indicate that the indigenous mussel performs better when confronted with abiotic stress or biotic pressure. The alien X. securis is currently found to establish high-density patches of individuals at the confluence of main rivers that flow into the estuary (highly heterogeneous scenario). Such behaviour favours its settlement far from the native mussel influence area. X. securis also colonises hard substrates that are notfully occupied by other invertebrates, but its range was found to be limited by the presence of the indigenous mussel. Copyright © 2013 Inter-Research.

Filgueira R.,CSIC - Institute of Marine Research | Castro B.G.,University of Vigo
Continental Shelf Research | Year: 2011

Based on the stable isotope composition in 15N and 13C of different potential sources of organic matter and consumers of an intertidal Zostera marina meadow located in San Simón Bay (Ría de Vigo, NW of Spain), a simplified food web of this community was reconstructed. For this purpose, some alternatives in different steps of the most used methodology of stable isotope dietary analysis were developed that cope with some of the limitations associated to the interpretation of isotopic signals for food web analysis, those of uncertainty on the fractionation value, mathematical model to use for the diet resolution and shortage of the isotope number for discriminating many food sources. The application of this protocol to the studied community reported similar results to those from other studies based on similar trophic webs, emphasizing the importance of local primary producers, especially microphytobenthos, which could be available for several primary consumers through resuspension forced by tidal hydrodynamic. The good agreement with previous results suggests that the proposed protocol is a feasible alternative to elucidate the most plausible trophic relationships in complex trophic webs using stable isotopes analysis. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd.

Alonso-Fernandez A.,CSIC - Institute of Marine Research | Saborido-Rey F.,CSIC - Institute of Marine Research
Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology | Year: 2012

Proximate composition and energy content in Trisopterus luscus have been studied to address energy allocation strategy. Energy reserves in pouting females are mainly associated with lipids stored in the liver. Water content appeared to be a useful index in order to obtain very accurate predictions of energy density, particularly for ovaries and liver. Condition indices, HSI and K, are suitable to analyze nutritional status of fish, since they reflect changes in energy content and proximate composition in the different tissues studied. The seasonality of energy reserves was detected and is closely related to the sexual cycle, indicating that females pouting display a period of energy storage, mainly through lipid deposition in the liver. Therefore, T. luscus should be considered a capital rather than an income breeder, as the energy for reproduction comes essentially from stored energy. © 2012 Elsevier B.V.

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