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2016-12-16 - Colloque/Abstract - Anglais - 1 page(s)

Georges Nadège, Richir Jonathan , Batigny Antoine , Borges Alberto, Champenois Willy, Gobert Sylvie, Roberty Stéphane, Grosjean Philippe , "Copper toxicity on coral holobiont photosynthetic processes" in Benelux Congress of Zoology, Antwerp, Belgium, 2016

  • Codes CREF : Océanographie biologique (DI3191), Physiologie des invertébrés (DI3229), Biologie (DI3100)
  • Unités de recherche UMONS : Ecologie numérique des milieux aquatiques (S807)
  • Instituts UMONS : Institut de Recherche sur les Systèmes Complexes (Complexys), Institut des Biosciences (Biosciences)
Texte intégral :

Abstract(s) :

(Anglais) Copper (Cu), an essential micronutrient to organisms, may become toxic when present at too high environmental concentrations. This metal remains an aquatic contaminant of concern, notably because of its recent re-use as biocide in metal-based antifouling paints. The aim of this study was to monitor the physiological alterations in a zooxanthellate coral species and its endosymbionts (i.e. the coral holobiont) exposed to increasing Cu concentrations. Nubbins of Seriatopora hystrix were exposed for 8 days in 1 L intermittent respirometers to 5 nominal Cu concentrations: 0-2-5-15-50 ppb. Respirometers were maintained at 25.0±0.2°C with successive open/close cycles of 30 min. A 12/12 hours day-night light regime was applied with constant daylight intensity of 200 μmol photons m-2 s-1. Water renewal rate during the 30 min open cycles was 15 mL.min-1. The photosynthetic performances of coral endosymbionts were assessed daily with a fluorescence imaging system (imaging-PAM). At the end of the 8-days experiment, the maximal photochemical quantum yield (FV/FM) of coral nubbins had decreased by 12% and 38%, respectively, in the 15 ppb and 50 ppb treatments. This decrease was even greater for the effective photochemical quantum yield (ɸPSII) with values dropping by 41% and 54%, respectively. Cu exposure also affected the symbiosis between the coral host and its endosymbionts. Nubbins of the 15 ppb treatment slightly lightened from day 6, whilst nubbins exposed to the 50 ppb treatment lightened from day 3, and started to bleach from day 6. The analysis of nubbins’ primary productivity did not coincide with the above observations, the oxygen production within each respirometer remaining relatively constant during the overall experiment for all treatments. This unexpected observation may be the sign of a compensation mechanism. In conclusion, Cu affected the photosynthetic processes of S. histrix within 8 days from relevant environmental concentrations of 15 ppb. The exposure of corals to toxic chemicals thus has to be considered as an additional stressor to, e.g., ocean acidification or elevated temperature, which may disturb their ecophysiology and lead to bleaching.


Mots-clés :
  • (Anglais) Toxicity
  • (Anglais) Copper
  • (Anglais) Seriatopora hystrix
  • (Anglais) Scleractinian coral
  • (Anglais) Toxicology
  • (Anglais) Photosynthetic processes