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Ocean acidification impacts mussel control on biomineralisation

Fitzer S, Phoenix VR, Cusack M & Kamenos NA (2014) Ocean acidification impacts mussel control on biomineralisation, Scientific Reports, 4, Art. No.: 6218.

Ocean acidification is altering the oceanic carbonate saturation state and threatening the survival of marine calcifying organisms. Production of their calcium carbonate exoskeletons is dependent not only on the environmental seawater carbonate chemistry but also the ability to produce biominerals through proteins. We present shell growth and structural responses by the economically important marine calcifier Mytilus edulis to ocean acidification scenarios (380, 550, 750, 1000≈ atm pCO 2). After six months of incubation at 750≈ atm pCO 2, reduced carbonic anhydrase protein activity and shell growth occurs in M. edulis. Beyond that, at 1000≈ atm pCO 2, biomineralisation continued but with compensated metabolism of proteins and increased calcite growth. Mussel growth occurs at a cost to the structural integrity of the shell due to structural disorientation of calcite crystals. This loss of structural integrity could impact mussel shell strength and reduce protection from predators and changing environments.

marine biology; geochemistry

AuthorsFitzer Susan, Phoenix Vernon R, Cusack Maggie, Kamenos Nicholas A
Publication date08/2014
Publication date online28/08/2014
Date accepted by journal08/08/2014
PublisherSpringer Nature

Scientific Reports: Volume 4 (2014)

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