Synergistic effects of an oil dispersant and low temperature on the freezing tolerance and solute concentrations of the blue mussel (Mytilus edulis L.)

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Aarset, Arne Vollan ; Zachariassen, Karl Erik
  • Publisher: Co-Action Publishing
  • Journal: Polar Research (issn: 1751-8369, eissn: 1751-8369)
  • Related identifiers: doi: 10.3402/polar.v1i3.6988
  • Subject:
    mesheuropmc: fungi | animal structures

Exposure of blue mussels (Mytilus edulis L.) to an oil dispersant in increasing concentrations caused increased degree of injury in the mussels. The oil dispersant seemed to affect mechanisms responsible for the distribution of inorganic ions (Na+, K+, Cl-) and free amino acids across the cell membranes. The dispersant caused a marked reduction in the ability of the mussels to survive freezing at -10°C. Freezing also caused more pronounced alterations in the transmembrane ionic distributions observed following exposure to the dispersant. This may indicate that the injuries caused by freezing are qualitatively the same as those caused by exposure to the dispersant alone, but brought into more extreme conditions. Thus, freezing appears to potentiate the effect of environmental pollutions by concentrating them in the fluid fraction of the frozen body fluids.
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