Phenotypic Morphological Plasticity Induced by Environmental Salt Stress in the Brine Shrimp, Artemia franciscana

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Phenotypic plasticity is the ability of an organism to express different phenotypes in response to biotic or abiotic environmental cues. The ability of an organism to make changes during development to adjust to changes in its environment is a key to survival. Sexually reproducing organisms that have short life cycles and that are easy to raise in the laboratory are more conducive for developmental phenotypic plasticity. Considerable research has already been carried out on the brine shrimp, Artemia franciscana, regarding its morphology due to changing salinities. There is, however, little research considering subsequent generations and how there morphology might be ... continued below

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viii, 41 pages : illustrations (some color)

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Jones, Shaun Gray December 2015.

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  • Jones, Shaun Gray

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Phenotypic plasticity is the ability of an organism to express different phenotypes in response to biotic or abiotic environmental cues. The ability of an organism to make changes during development to adjust to changes in its environment is a key to survival. Sexually reproducing organisms that have short life cycles and that are easy to raise in the laboratory are more conducive for developmental phenotypic plasticity. Considerable research has already been carried out on the brine shrimp, Artemia franciscana, regarding its morphology due to changing salinities. There is, however, little research considering subsequent generations and how there morphology might be affected by parental experiences. This study has examined: 1) the morphological effects of different rearing regimes of different salinity levels, and 2) the epigenetic transgenerational transfer of these morphological traits in A. franciscana. Measurements included rate of growth (as measured by instar), body size, body length, and other morphological traits. A gradual increase to more hyperosmotic conditions during development produced brine shrimp that were larger in size and also more developmentally advanced. Salinity stress experienced by adults had increased the growth rate in the F1 offspring of A. franciscana. Collectively, these data indicate that Artemia franciscana is a tractable model for investigating phenotypic plasticity. These findings have added to the ever-growing field of developmental phenotypic plasticity while also providing more information on the natural history and adaptive abilities of A. franciscana.

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viii, 41 pages : illustrations (some color)

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UNT Theses and Dissertations

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  • December 2015

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  • March 20, 2016, 10:34 a.m.

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  • May 24, 2017, 9:55 a.m.

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Jones, Shaun Gray. Phenotypic Morphological Plasticity Induced by Environmental Salt Stress in the Brine Shrimp, Artemia franciscana, thesis, December 2015; Denton, Texas. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc822750/: accessed January 22, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; .