Cite this paper:
SUPRIYA Nagathinkal T, SUDHA Kappalli, KRISHNAKUMAR Velayudhannair, ANILKUMAR Gopinathan. Molt and reproduction enhancement together with hemolymph ecdysteroid elevation under eyestalk ablation in the female fiddler crab, Uca triangularis (Brachyura: Decapoda)[J]. Journal of Oceanology and Limnology, 2017, 35(3): 645-657

Molt and reproduction enhancement together with hemolymph ecdysteroid elevation under eyestalk ablation in the female fiddler crab, Uca triangularis (Brachyura: Decapoda)

SUPRIYA Nagathinkal T1, SUDHA Kappalli1, KRISHNAKUMAR Velayudhannair2, ANILKUMAR Gopinathan3
1 Post Graduate Department of Zoology and Research Centre, Sree Narayana College, Kannur, Kerala 670007, India;
2 Department of Zoology, University of Madras, Guindy Campus, Chennai-600 025, India;
3 School of Biotechnology, Chemical and Biomedical Engineering, VIT University, Vellore 632014, India
We present the results of eyestalk extirpation experiments performed on the fiddler crab, Uca triangularis at seasons of molting and reproduction, with a view to have a better understanding of the regulatory mechanisms of these two highly energy-demanding processes. Bilateral eyestalk ablation resulted in precocious acceleration of both molting and reproduction, irrespective of the season at which each experiment was conducted. The rate of accelerated ovarian growth, however, was maximum if the eyestalk ablation was conducted during August–January, the breeding season in the wild, or in February– May (molting-reproductive season), wherein a section of the wild population would be engaged in molting and another section in breeding. The highest degree of precocious molt acceleration, on the other hand, was obtained during June–July when the population was primarily engaged in molting, but with no reproductive activity. The precocious oocyte maturation (due to de-eyestalking) was minimal in June–July. Significantly, the eyestalk ablation also resulted in a dramatic increase in the hemolymph ecdysteroid titer, revealing that a high ecdysteroid titer would have no restraining influence on vitellogenesis. No spawning was, however, observed among de-eyestalked females, even though their final oocyte size surpassed the size of the normal mature oocytes, implying that spawning is not exclusively under the control of eyestalk hormones. A comparative study performed on the vitelline components of the experimentals and the controls revealed that the precociously incorporated yolk under eyestalk ablation was biochemically impoverished. These results indicate that throughout the annual cycle, both the somatic and the reproductive growth of U. triangularis are under the influence of inhibitory principles from the eyestalks. It is also revealing that mere deprival of the inhibitory principles does not culminate into successful vitellogenesis. Arguably, the inhibitory influence from the eyestalks could be a prerequisite for normal healthy maturation of the oocytes and spawning.
Key words:    crab|molt|reproduction|eyestalk principles|ecdysteroids   
Received: 2015-12-08   Revised: 2016-02-14
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Articles by KRISHNAKUMAR Velayudhannair
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